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LT Barclay

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Member since: Fri Apr 15, 2011, 08:54 AM
Number of posts: 1,945

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Better than a primary: humpbacks, northern right whale dolphins, pacific white-sided dolphins and

a few sea lions for fun:


Shots fired at Sea Shepherd vessel working to save the vaquita in the Gulf of California

Sorry, I've been wanting to post this for a while, but have been busy.

For those who may not have a background on this issue, a few points:

1. The Vaquita is a unique, shy, beautiful porpoise who is a one of a kind. There are only a few left, current estimates say less than 10. This isn't losing a regional population of a species with a broader range, vaquitas are only found in the Gulf of California. They are so shy, they were only seen by scientists in the 1970's and few pictures exist that are not of dead vaquitas.

2. Species with historically low populations DO NOT have the inbreeding problems that result in other species that experience genetic bottlenecks. The current hypothesis is that all deleterious genes have been eliminated.

3. This is NOT a historic fishery, as fishermen came to the area primarily to fish for the totoaba to send to the Chinese. In the past the fish were left to rot while the bladders were shipped.

4. The best thing for the vaquita and the fisherfolk would be a NO GO reserve. Research has shown that marine reserves IMPROVE fishing in the surrounding waters.

5. Fishing gear that is safe for the vaquita does exist and sustainable catch should be supported so the fisherfolks can make a living. The government of Mexico has held back from permitting the new gear (reasons unknown).


7. Sea Shepherd needs your help.

8. If we can't win the fight to save this species, there is little hope to save any, at least any in the ocean. This is a geographically isolated problem without a big corporation mucking things up. Just a few fishermen looking for easy money. The vaquita isn't even the targets species and there is no competition for land use or other things that make so many endangered species issues so complex. This is the easy one. We need to win.

Southern Right Whale Dolphins

I posted in DU Lounge, but thought more folks might find it here.
Just a interlude for the sheer fascination of the movement and beauty of these creatures:

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