Friday, 16 December 2016

Mexico bid to save world's smallest vaquita porpoise

Mexican authorities and scientists are trying to save the world's smallest porpoise by capturing illegal "ghost" fishing nets.

They have managed to remove more than 100 dumped or lost nets left floating in the sea from October to December.

Local fishermen and conservationists helped to trawl 11,814km (7,340 miles) in the Gulf of California, the only area where the vaquita porpoise live.

Its population is estimated to be down to about 60 individuals.

Conservationists say they fear the porpoise will be extinct by 2022.

The main threat to the porpoise are the nets used to illegally catch fish known as the totoaba which is hunted for its swim bladder - fetching tens of thousands of dollars on the black market in China.

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