Sunday December 09 2018

Posted by BajaInsider.com on September 15, 2018
  • Save the Parrot Fish in the Sea of Cortez
    Save the Parrot Fish in the Sea of Cortez
  • Students painted a mural to illustrate the importance of protecting the parrotfish
    Students painted a mural to illustrate the importance of protecting the parrotfish
  • Students make presentations to other students, on the importance of parrotfish conservation
    Students make presentations to other students, on the importance of parrotfish conservation
  • Students demonstrate their commitment to Parrotfish conservation overlooking the Bay of La Paz.
    Students demonstrate their commitment to Parrotfish conservation overlooking the Bay of La Paz.
  • Smiling faces of the future Parrotfish Conservationists.
    Smiling faces of the future Parrotfish Conservationists.

 

Some years ago, the richness and diversity of fish in our seas was imagined endless and infinite. The resources of the sea were plentiful and the oceans were full of food. Unfortunately, what will soon be endless will be the species of fish that will continue to disappear.

We have been very irresponsible with the resources that the sea offers us by preying and endangering a species that we do not even know. Here, in the state of Baja California Sur, particularly in the area of ​​the Bay of La Paz and the nearby islands, there is a species of fish that will be soon under this threat: the parrotfish. Unfortunately, the sightings of this beautiful fish with striking colors are becoming less, their numbers have fallen precipitously.

The nightly spear fishing has decimated significantly the populations of our coasts. Other illegal fishing techniques have also contributed. What is most striking is that there is no regulation on the size captured. Just to show you this, go around the local markets and see that the parrot fish that are offered in the fishmongers are mostly small, do not reach their maturity or optimal size, caught by unscrupulous fishermen and bought by traders indifferent to the problem. Nobody cares if the population of this variety of fish has been reduced or affected, just for business purposes.

Environmental local organizations like “Espiritu Santo es parte de ti” where Lucia Corral, Leonardo Gonzales and Elena Zavala  have done a great job  coming to the rescue of the parrotfish recently, asking society not selling or consuming it, but we should also add not to catch it. They are going to Prepas here in La Paz and spreading the message about taking care of parrotfish and our islands and resources as well.

What most of these people involved in this devastation do not know that this kind of fish is very important for the coral reefs due to they feed on the algae that cover those keeping them healthy. If we add the absence of this fish to the overheating of the oceans, the corals will die and the habitat and the ecosystems miles of species coexist and take refuge, will disappear in a few years. Those who are responsible for generating and establishing laws about the protection of this particular animal, have not yet noticed the seriousness of the problem. They may not even know it. The parrotfish is unprotected by laws and society in general because it is not on the list of endangered species.

But there is hope: Teacher Ramón Ibarra Escobar and a group of students from Alternative tourism training from plantel 11 of Colegio de Bachilleres de La Paz are developing a campaign to save this species so persecuted and harassed by nocturnal harpooners on our coasts during the past 30 years. The campaign is promoted inside and outside the campus with t-shirts and posters which seek generate awareness to the common citizen and hopefully, to the competent authorities.  Last June, the group climbed to the top of one of the hills around Balandra just to show a message with big letters that reads “hold on parrotfish, we love you".

Besides all this promotion, the teacher and his groups of students, as part of their academic training, are doing, betting on the future, presentations and talks to the kindergartens and elementary schools in La Paz, on the importance of the preservation of this fish, planting in children a different perception of responsible consumption and the conservation of marine life. Perhaps the next generations have the will and desire to save the beautiful and colorful parrotfish. We hope it's not too late.

by Ramon Ibarra

See their video here: https://www.facebook.com/EspirituSantoespartedeti/videos/2057530981130348/

 


All content and images
©2003-2018 BajaInsider.com
The Original Online Magazine fore Traveling & Living in Baja

About the BajaInsider