Lawmakers vote to extend moratorium on ray killing contests

February 28, 2019

Annapolis, MD - On Feb. 26 the Maryland Senate passed Senate Bill (SB) 143, to extend the moratorium on cownose ray killing contests in the Chesapeake Bay until a fishery management plan is created for the species. Sponsored by Senator Ron Young [D- District 3], it was approved by a unanimous vote of 46-0.


A 2017 law placed a two-year moratorium on sponsoring, conducting or participating in a cownose ray killing contest for prizes in Maryland waters to allow the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) time to prepare a fishery management plan for regulating the take of the species. Since the deadline is fast approaching with no management plan in place, it is critical to extend the prohibition until the DNR fulfills its mandate.


During the contests, which were held every summer for decades in Maryland prior to the passage of the 2017 bill, participants competed for prizes for killing the heaviest rays, who were often pregnant females who migrated into the bay to give birth. The rays were hauled out of the water, beaten to death and then discarded after the contest’s conclusion.


“Brutally slaughtering cownose rays for cash and prizes is not something Maryland should be known for,” said Emily Hovermale, Maryland state director for the Humane Society of the United States. “We commend the Senate for recognizing that the moratorium was near its sunset and ensuring that these ecologically damaging contests will remain prohibited.”


The House version, HB 213, is awaiting the final House vote.


Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Please reload

Featured Posts

FREE Surplus Supplies for Non-Profits and Small Businesses

July 18, 2019

Please reload

Recent Posts
Please reload

Please reload

Search By Tags

I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!

Please reload

Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square

Paid for and Authorized by Friends of Ron Young, Kathy Rossen, Treasurer.
Not Paid For at Taxpayer Expense

  • Facebook - Grey Circle
  • Twitter - Grey Circle