The most popular stories from our Spanish-language service, Mongabay Latam, followed a new green-eyed shark species in Belize, salmon farms in Patagonia, blast fishing in Peru, a cocaine-laden plane in a Peruvian park, and an Andean bear mystery, also in Peru.
Belize’s tiny sixgill shark species at risk
“A little shark so adorable, you want to hug and kiss it,” is how a researcher described the Atlantic sixgill shark (Hexanchus vitulus), a new species found in the depths of Belize’s oceans. First thought to be a bigeye sixgill shark (Hexanchus nakamurai), a genetic study showed this small green-eyed shark is a new species. However, deep-sea fishing threatens its existence.
Rock, paper, gunpowder: Peru fisherfolk fight blast fishing
Blast fishing is destroying the biodiversity in Peru’s oceans to supply Lima’s big markets and restaurants. Without state support, fisherfolk defend their livelihoods armed only with rocks. Multiple coastal areas are affected, including underwater banks, fish nurseries and the coastal resource zones of the Chincha Islands in the Paracas National Reserve.
Locals left out of Colombia’s Pisba plain demarcation
In the highlands of central Colombia, 6,500 rural farmers hope the government will consult them in the demarcation of the Pisba Plain. They fear they will lose their lands and their livelihoods. Meanwhile, coal mining continues in this fragile ecosystem.
Salmon industries enter Argentina’s pristine waters
Argentine civil society groups, including environmentalists, scientists and Patagonia residents, are organizing against an industrial fishing model they believe will adversely affect the environment, tourism and local fishing production, and undermine alternative projects underway to develop more sustainable aquaculture. Earlier this year, Argentina signed an agreement with Norway, the world’s main salmon producer, to study the feasibility of developing salmon farms in the country, specifically in the Beagle Channel in Tierra del Fuego.
Cocaine plane found in Peru’s Bahuaja-Sonene Park
Anti-narcotics officials intercepted a small plane with 30 kilograms (66 pounds) of cocaine in Bahuaja-Sonene National Park in southeastern Peru. The news confirmed information revealed in May by Mongabay Latam’s special report, “Bahuaja-Sonene in Danger,” of clandestine runways inside this protected area.
Andean bear slaughter reveals Colombia’s neglect
Andean bears are vital for the natural regeneration of Colombia’s forests, says biologist Mauricio Vela in an interview with Mongabay Latam. Despite continuing news of the slaughter of spectacled bears (Tremarctos ornatus), the biggest threat to them is a dearth of information. “We don’t know the biological or ecological consequences of these losses because we don’t know how many bears we have,” Vela says.
Read these stories in their entirety in Spanish here at Mongabay Latam.
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