Help for Last Vaquitas: Seafood Import Ban Expanded
In the northern Gulf of California, the most endangered marine mammals in the world — blunt-nosed, shy vaquita porpoises — have dwindled to around 10 individuals. Last week the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service finally announced a broad ban on imports of Mexican shrimp and other seafood caught in the near-extinct animals' habitat.
The import ban places strong pressure on the Mexican government to stop the use of deadly gillnets that are entangling, drowning and killing vaquitas.
"This embargo is a crucial step toward ending the Mexican government's utter indifference to the vaquita's extinction," said Sarah Uhlemann, our international program director. "President López Obrador has sat by and watched these tiny porpoises spiral toward oblivion. But money matters, and this embargo should finally get Mexico's attention."