TPWD Print-Friendly Page: http://tpwd.texas.gov/newsmedia/releases/print.phtml?req=20170123a

Editors: Images associated with this news release are available on the TPWD Web site (http://tpwd.texas.gov/newsmedia/news_images/).

Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030

TPWD Website: http://tpwd.texas.gov

TPWD News Release — Jan. 23, 2017

Release the Kraken!

AUSTIN- The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Artificial Reef Program sank a 371-ft cargo vessel, named The Kraken, on Jan. 20, 2017. Dubbed the Kraken after the mythical, squid-like sea monster immortalized on film and in literature, the vessel was sunk 67 miles off the coast of Galveston to create a new artificial reef.

The Kraken began its journey in May 2016 when it was towed from Trinidad to Brownsville, Texas to be repurposed for its new life as an artificial reef 140 feet below the surface. Contractors with Cahaba Disaster Recovery LLC worked with our Artificial Reef Program to remove all fuel, oil and hazardous materials from the vessel in order to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s best management practices.

Over time, this sunken ship will become an artificial reef that attracts fish, coral and other invertebrates as well as divers and anglers. The Kraken’s proximity to the Flower Gardens Marine Sanctuary also makes it a premiere dive location in the Gulf of Mexico.

 “The entire marine ecosystem benefits from artificial reef projects like the Kraken,” said TPWD Artificial Reef Program Leader J. Dale Shively. “The Gulf of Mexico has only a few naturally occurring reefs so whenever we are able to add a new structure like this, the whole area benefits from the added habitat and species diversity.”

As an Artificial Reef Program Ships-to-Reefs project, the sinking of the Kraken was made possible by donations and  Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill natural resource damage settlement funds jointly provided by natural resource trustee agencies in Texas which include the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Texas General Land Office.

For more information about the Texas Artificial Reef Program, see the artificial reefs website, and its companion interactive mapping application.

For video of the sinking, visit the TPWD YouTube page.

Images of the sinking are also found on the TPWD news images page.

###