Mexican aquaculture firm releases 30,000 endangered totoaba in the Sea of Cortez

Responsible Seafood Advocate

Earth Ocean Farms has released 175,000 hatchlings in seven years

totoaba
Earth Ocean Farms has released another 30,000 juvenile totoaba into the Sea of Cortez in an effort to replenish stocks of the endangered fish. PRNewsfoto/Earth Ocean Farms.

Mexican aquaculture company Earth Ocean Farms (EOF) this week announced that it has released another 30,000 juvenile totoaba into the Sea of Cortez, in a longstanding effort to replenish stocks of the endangered fish.

The company produces totoaba (Totoaba macdonaldi) and red snapper in state-of-the-art offshore aquaculture structures in the Sea of Cortez. It produces both species for the domestic foodservice and hospitality industry. Over the past seven years, EOF has released 175,000 juvenile totoaba. The company said that in previous totoaba releases, up to 98 percent of juveniles survived during transport and release.

“This means a lot to us, it is a contribution to the environment, to the protection of this iconic species for Mexico that only exists in the Sea of Cortez,” said Israel Marqueda, commercial director at EOF.

The release was completed with the support of federal and local governments as well as research institutions and community organizations as part of a restocking plan. Totoaba is an endemic species to the Gulf of California and currently in a vulnerable population state due to overfishing. Local community and youth organizations in Mulegue also participated in the release.

Aquaculture gives endangered totoaba a fighting chance

“For us, the involvement of the community in these events is fundamental, especially that of the children, because a sustainable future depends on the investment of future generations. The fact that the children get to release the fish into the water gives them a sense of responsibility for the hatchlings and helps them become more aware of what the positive long-term impacts will be,” said Marqueda.

For more, see this YouTube video from Earth Ocean Farms.

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