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Fish Traps Harmful Effects on Belize's Flats

Updated: Jun 10, 2022

Guides over many decades have been concerned on the bycatch of bonefish, tarpon and permit in artisanal fisheries. These species are constantly captured in the heart-and-tail traps locally known as beach traps. The main concern are the unsustainable practices of keeping the product and by-catch for several days until the traps are harvested, with sport fish likely being preyed upon barracudas and finding its way as part of the harvest product when the fisheries department and co-managers are not present to ensure these protected species such as permit (picture below) are not released. BFFA urges fishers and co-managers to daily checking of their traps and find mechanisms to ensure sport fish are released as guides depend on these fish for a living.

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