Hawaii-based buoy tender to conduct multi-mission patrol in French Polynesia

ABOARD THE USCGC WALNUT – After a 2,500-mile trip, the crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Walnut will conduct vital maritime safety and security missions throughout the French Polynesia region.

The Cutter’s crew is scheduled to arrive in Papeete, Tahiti, Thursday.

During the patrol, the crew of the 225-foot buoy tender, home ported in Honolulu, will ensure compliance with fisheries conservation in cooperation with the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, a regional fisheries management organization comprised of 26 member nations that regulates commercial fishing practices to ensure the sustainability of the region’s tuna fishery.

While in Papeete, the Coast Guard crew will assist local environmental groups with the removal of the destructive Taramea starfish from the reefs around Tahiti.

After departing Papeete, the crew of the Walnut plans to conduct law enforcement operations with a fisheries enforcement officer from the Cook Islands Ministry of Marine Resources.

Ship rider opportunities are made possible under the terms of a bilateral law enforcement agreement with the U.S. The Coast Guard has similar agreements with the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

The crew will also meet with local Papeete officials to discuss opportunities to increase partnerships in the maritime domain.

Toward the end of the patrol, the Walnut’s crew will perform routine maintenance on U.S. aids to navigation, such as fixed buoys and lights.

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