Volume 73

Community participation a strategy for the monitoring and control of lionfish in the Mexican Caribbean

Sabido-Itza, M. M; M.B. Hernandez-Millan; S. Dominguez-Guzman; H. Rincon-Beltran; M. L. Palma-Moo
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Date: November, 2020

Pages: 49-50

Event: Proceedings of the Seventy-Three Annual Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute

City: Virtual

Country: Virtual


The invasion of the lionfish (Pterois volitans / miles) is considered one of the main threats to the marine biodiversity of the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico. Eleven years after its first confirmation in Mexico, the lionfish has managed to establish itself in different habitats and depths of the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve (RBBC) and the Arrecifes de Xcalak National Park (PNAX). Considering that its eradication is practically impossible; different sectors such as fisheries, government, civil society, among others, have implemented a strategy to address the lionfish problem. As a result, the fishing and community sectors have participated in activities like lionfish control, use, monitoring and dissemination/education. Due to the fact that between 2009-2019 more than 15,000 lionfish have been caught and registered, a groups of fishermen and young people have also been trained to carry out biological monitoring of the species. Regarding dissemination and education, coastal and influential communities have been engaged through interviews, informative talks, gastronomic tastings, children's festivals and games, with the goal being that these communities can learn about the problems of the invasion and promote its use through the commercialization of meat, crafts and local consumption. Among the main results, a strong appropriation of the fishing and community sectors regarding lionfish control actions, knowledge of population aspects of the species and finally, options for the use of lionfish have been identified that generate income to the communities. These actions help to conserve the marine ecosystems in the area and create shared responsibility between the government and the population.

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