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Grouper, snapper on decline

Thursday, April 3 2014

The Western Central Atlantic Fishery Commission (WECAFC) has expressed concern about the “serious decline” or disappearance in the last two decades of the spawning aggregations of grouper and snapper in the Caribbean.

The Ministry of Food Production in a release issued yesterday, said the WECAFC, a body of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, convened for its biennial session in Port-of-Spain on March 26 to 28 where they adopted a range of management recommendations and resolutions.

The Commission recognised that immediate action was required to stop further reduction in spawning areas and depletion of these important stocks. It therefore established a regional seasonal closure for all commercial and recreational fishing activities of Nassau Grouper in identified areas fro the period December 1 of this year to March 31, 2015.

The WECAFC noted in recent years, national efforts for the management and conservation of Queen Conch increased in the region, leading to encouraging developments such as better stock protection, improved understanding of the species ecology and management needs and enhanced enforcement to combat illegal catch and trade.

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