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Palm Beach County to ban balloons in county-operated parks to help safeguard wildlife

Posted at 1:31 PM, Aug 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-25 05:06:12-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. -- The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department have partnered with the Loggerhead Marinelife Center to prohibit the use of balloons at county-operated parks effective Sept. 1.

Those parks include Carlin Park, DuBois Park, Jupiter Beach Park and Ocean Cay Park in Jupiter, South Inlet Park in Boca Raton, Gulfstream Park in Gulfstream, Ocean Inlet Park in Ocean Ridge, Juno Beach Park and Loggerhead Park in Juno Beach, and Ocean Reef Park and Peanut Island Park in Riviera Beach.

Deflated balloons resemble jellyfish, a common prey for sea turtles. Staff at Loggerhead Marinelife Center regularly treat turtles that have eaten balloons.

"We're so grateful to partner with Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation on the Balloon Ban project," said Tommy Cutt, LMC's chief conservation officer. "Ending the use of balloons at these beachfront parks will help protect sea turtles and other coastal wildlife, as well as provide clean, beautiful parks for locals and thousands of out-of-county guests who visit them every year."