Mexico has been fined in the last few hours for not doing enough to protect the sea cow, the most endangered marine mammal in the world, and consequently you will not be able to export plants and wildlife appearing on the CITES convention list.
The decision was made on Monday by the secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), signed by 184 countries, which argued that Mexico has not presented an adequate plan to combat illegal fishing McDonald’s totoaba fish..
the little cow (Phocoena breast)a species of porpoise endemic to the Gulf of California, is a collateral victim of totoaba fishingalso endangered, whose swim bladder sells for no less than US$8,000 China for its presumed medicinal virtues.
Since Mexico has not complied with the requirements of the Secretariat, this “recommend to suspend trade” with Mexico of all species appearing on the CITES list, indicates the decision.
“This recommendation will remain in effect until such time as the Secretariat deems appropriate a revised version of the action plan and publish a notice in this regard”, specifies the text.
According to several nature conservation organizations, the sanctions announced on Monday represent “millions of dollars of exports”.
According to data provided by National Geographic, in the area monitored by science they could only detect a dozen of specimens of vaquitas in the year 2022. There are only vaquitas in the Gulf of California, Mexico.
The figure is alarming, as is the speed with which the population of this mammal has decreased: in 1997 it was estimated that just over 560 specimens existedaccording to the International Union for Conservation of Nature the figure dropped to 200 by 2005 and some 15 years later it’s nearly a dozen.
To make matters worse, the vaquita de mer’s reproductive rate is very low, a trait they share with other cetacean species. They reproduce every two years or more. and gestation lasts between 10 and 11 months. In addition, they give birth to only one calf each time. These puppies weigh at least 7.5 kilos at birth and measure between 70 and 78 centimeters. in adulthood They weigh 55 kilos and measure 1.5 meters.
the vaquitas They were discovered in 1958. However, there were clues about these mammals a little earlier, according to the government of Mexico, which explains that the earliest description, based on three skulls found in San Felipe, Baja California, dates back to the first half of the 20th century. Subsequently, a full description of the animal was made after the discovery of some cows stuck.
However, there is no clear explanation of the origin of the name its appearance may give some clues: Vaquitas are stocky, with white bellies and dark rings around the eyes and mouth. Another resemblance to their terrestrial counterparts?
The ancestors of the vaquita had four legs and according to studies they returned to the water after millions of years and gradually changed shape: front legs transformed into flippers and the rear ones have disappeared.
“Almost 3,150 Mexican animals and plants are CITES registered and many of these species are exported. These are profitable products such as crocodile skin, mahogany, tarantulas, pet reptiles, cacti and other plants,” underlines a joint statement from several organizations (Center for Biological Diversity, Animal Welfare Institute, Natural Resources Defense Council and Environmental Investigation Agency).
Mary Ortiz is a seasoned journalist with a passion for world events. As a writer for News Rebeat, she brings a fresh perspective to the latest global happenings and provides in-depth coverage that offers a deeper understanding of the world around us.