Whale shark, Rhincodon typus. (Photo: Produce)
Whale shark capture and trade banned
Monday, July 17, 2017, 21:40 (GMT + 9)
The Ministry of Production (PRODUCE) announced a ban on whale shark (Rhincodon typus) capture in marine waters of Peruvian jurisdiction as well as its landing, transportation, retention, processing and marketing.
The measure was set out through a ministerial resolution and began to take effect on Saturday, July 15.
The ministry reported that if an incidental catch of this species, it should be returned to its natural habitat immediately, without damaging the specimen, ensuring that all reasonable steps are taken to ensure its safe release.
"The incident should be reported to Instituto del Mar del Peru (IMARPE), to take information about the capture and the main biological characteristics of the whale shark," added PRODUCE.
The General Directorate of Policies and Regulatory Analysis in Fisheries and Aquaculture of the Office of the Vice Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture of PRODUCE, in coordination with IMARPE, may provide for the approval of an information record format for the by-catch of the species.
The ministry noted that a report by the IMARPE indicates that due to its average longevity of 150 years, slow growth, late sexual maturity, long life cycle, low fertility, among other factors, if being exploited in a targeted manner, the whale shark would constitute a highly vulnerable species.
The regulation also instructs the IMARPE to carry out population studies on the species whale shark that make it possible to know the situational status of the populations of the species in the jurisdictional waters of Peru.
The species whale shark is found, above all, in the north of the country.