Fish fight

Tension between sport and commercial fishing in Mexico.

Members of fishing co-operatives in the Mexican resort town of Mazatlán recently blocked the navigation channel for eight hours, escalating their demands to be allowed to fish commercially for mahi-mahi.

This has put them on a direct collision course with the sports fishing industry that generates USD 1.6 billion for Baja California Sur annually.

According to article 68 of the General Law of Sustainable Fisheries and Acquaculture, this species of fish is exclusively reserved for sport fishing. An advisor to the Directorate of Inspection and Surveillance of the National Commission for Aquaculture and Fisheries (Conapesca) explains, “The law states that mahi-mahi is reserved for sport fishing for 50 nautical miles, to change this requires a change in the law.”

“The law states that mahi-mahi is reserved for sport fishing for 50 nautical miles, to change this requires a change in the law.”

Advisor to Conapesca, Mexico

According to a local fisherman, coastal fishing has been badly hit in the country. His arguments for opening the species to commercial fishing are: firstly, local fisherman are already catching them incidentally, secondly, existing species for commercial fishing are not profitable enough to maintain the fishing industry and finally, other Latin American countries, such as Peru, already catch the fish commercially.

To understand and tackle the problem, Deputy Claudia Yáñez in Colima established an open forum for all stakeholders to express their thoughts on allowing commercial fishermen to catch mahi-mahi. An advisor to Deputy Yáñez told us, “The controversy was provoked when we announced that no bill would be proposed until a thorough analysis is conducted and we could provide assurance that it would not affect Baja California Sur [the regional hub of sport fishing].”

A sports fishing business in Baja California Sur admits, “One of the problems with sports fishing is that, despite limits on the number of pieces that can be caught, there is no control. Go to the airport in La Paz or Los Cabos at the end of the week and you will see a lot of tourists, especially Americans and Canadians, with coolers full of fish.”

“One of the problems with sports fishing is that … there is no control.”

Sport fishing businessman, Mexico

The same source had an informed perspective on regulatory challenges, “Mahi-mahi is not from Mexico, it is a highly migratory species, so commercial fishing of it would require compliance with international regulations, perhaps similar to tuna.”

A local environmentalist has additional concerns, “If they were to release mahi-mahi to commercial fishing without the proper regulation, inspection and surveillance, in addition to impacting the sports fishing industry, it would deplete the stock status of the species.”

 

 

Important Notice
While the information in this article has been prepared in good faith, no representation, warranty, assurance or undertaking (express or implied) is or will be made, and no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted by Deheza Limited or by its officers, employees or agents in relation to the adequacy, accuracy, completeness or reasonableness of this article, or of any other information (whether written or oral), notice or document supplied or otherwise made available in connection with this article. All and any such responsibility and liability is expressly disclaimed.
This article has been delivered to interested parties for information only. Deheza Limited gives no undertaking to provide the recipient with access to any additional information or to update this article or any additional information, or to correct any inaccuracies in it which may become apparent.

Most recent in Lifestyle

Sex Pest 

Unmasking the depths of Colombian sex tourism. 

Child (don’t) Care

Tackling unpaid child support in Latin America. 

Slippery Soap

Empowering women in Mexico’s workforce.

Working nine ’til five?

The transition from a 48 to 40-hour work week in Mexico. 

Empowering Latin America’s Future

IADB bonds and World Bank partnership for education and employment.

Wellness wonderland

Latin America’s path to blissful travels.

Early checkout

Chiles minimum wage increase and its impact on the tourism industry.

Nearshoring fashion

The fashion industry is set to benefit from nearshoring in terms of logistics and sustainability.

Reading ahead

COVID-19 hit literacy rates in Latin America children but can EdTech help them catchup?

Fighting fit

Fitness apps enjoyed a pandemic-related boom but as life reverts to normal will it last?