Shrimp larvae. (Photo: Stock file)
CNP warns danger of catching wild shrimp larvae
Monday, January 15, 2018, 21:40 (GMT + 9)
The National Chamber of Fisheries (CNP) warns the serious danger shown by the wild shrimp larvae catches in the coastal profile, both for the fishing sector and for the shrimp industry in Ecuador.
The warning comes after the recent publication, in the national press, of a report that indicated that due to the alleged shortage of shrimp larvae, "some farmers use wild larvae because of the lack of supply".
Oceanographer Franklin Ormaza (Ph.D.), scientific and technical advisor to the CNP, explains in a statement that the danger lies in that, with the captures of wild shrimp larvae, larvae of other marine species are exterminated. He mentions in particular small pelagic fish such as sardines, mackerels, chuhueco, or large pelagics such as dolphin fish, trumpet, tuna, sharks, and even demersal fish such as croaker, crabs, catfish, among others, species that are the basis for artisanal fishing.
In addition, he points out that in the shrimp farms, the wild larvae could lead to the appearance of new diseases with disastrous consequences for that industry, as happened with the "white spot" in 2000 and with others.
According to Dr. Ormaza, there are several studies from the National Fisheries Institute that confirm the serious impact that other fish species suffer from this type of practice.
"Of every 100 larvae that are captured on the ocean shore, more than 90 correspond to other species, which then, instead of being returned to the sea, are thrown into the sand because they are considered waste, thereby exterminating the future fish populations, " the expert says.
The CNP recalls that a ministerial agreement of September 2002 prohibits indefinitely catches of wild shrimp larvae in the entire coastal profile of the country, so that larval capture is illegal.
The Chamber calls on the respective authorities to take the necessary actions to prevent productive activities so important for the economy and employment in the country, such as fishing and shrimp farming, from being seriously affected. In turn, he reminds that Ecuador has committed itself to fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
Lastly, he mentions as an example of the serious danger that the fishing stock hangs over the chuhueco, a species that has almost completely disappeared from the seas of Ecuador due to the capture of wild shrimp larvae.