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Why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction

An endangered species is any species that is in danger of disappearing from planet earth. The causes that give rise to this situation can be either natural, such as the increase in predators, due to lack of resources, such as when the species faces situations of food shortage, or changes and modifications in its habitat. which they simply cannot cope with.

Unfortunately, humans are also a determining factor in the extinction of species, having been the main responsible for the disappearance of many of them in the past and many others are in danger of extinction today, as is the case of the sea ​​cow . Do you want to know why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction ? At AgroCorrn we tell you all the details.

You may also be interested in: Desperate goal: save the vaquita porpoise
  1. The vaquita marina: characteristics
  2. Why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction – main causes
  3. Measures to prevent the extinction of the vaquita porpoise

The vaquita marina: characteristics

These are the main characteristics of the vaquita marina , also known as the sea ​​cow or cochito :

  • It is a cetacean or, in other words, a marine mammal that, due to its small size, belongs to the porpoise family, with only six species of porpoises in the world. Learn more about these types of animals with this other AgroCorrn article on What are marine mammals .
  • Its size does not usually exceed 150 cm in length , while its weight varies around 50 kg, characterized by the morphology of its lips, which protrude from its head, and its fins, which are larger than other porpoises. .
  • Regarding its character and behavior, it is much more shy than that of other cetaceans, such as dolphins, so that they only come to the surface to breathe, trying not to be seen. In addition, they are very unsocial animals, so they have a solitary lifestyle , although in some cases they can form small groups of 2 or 3 individuals.
  • It is an endemic species to Mexico, which makes it the only porpoise that lives in warm waters , although at present it is only found in shallow lakes located along the entire coast of the Gulf of California. The cause of its limited distribution is none other than the situation of danger of extinction in which it is found, so that, today, there are only about 30 specimens of this species , so it is logical that all of them are found located in the same location.

Why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction – main causes

These are the main reasons that why vaquita is endangered :

Illegal and trawling fishing

The main reason why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction is illegal fishing or carried out through devastating practices such as the use of trawl nets, in which the species is trapped. It should be noted that, surprisingly, it is not the fishing of the vaquita marina that has caused this situation, but the fishing of another species with which it shares a habitat, the totoaba fish . This fish is of great interest in the Asian market due to the beliefs and properties attributed to it, so that the exploitation of its habitat has caused both species to be in danger of extinction.

Sea cow habitat pollution

The contamination of their habitat by the use of pesticides and fertilizers in nearby agricultural areas, or variations in the flow of water cause alterations in the availability of some resources, such as food or nutrients, necessary for the survival of the sea cow . In addition, we must bear in mind that the ecosystem in which it is found is very small, so any variation in the balance of the ecosystem could bring with it alterations and consequences of great importance.

Climate change

Climate change is also one of the causes that has driven this situation. Faced with the increase in water temperature or other alterations in the characteristics of the ecosystem, most species are forced to migrate, something that is very likely to happen in the case of the vaquita porpoise, increasing, in turn, competition with other species.

Difficulties in the reproduction of the sea cow

On the other hand, as the number of vaquita species is reduced, the possibilities of contact between different sexes and mating are also reduced , which influences the size of the populations. If these do not reproduce, it is impossible for the number of individuals to increase or to recover.

Here you can consult more about different species of Animals in danger of extinction in Mexico , among which is the vaquita marina, but there are many more.

Measures to prevent the extinction of the vaquita porpoise

If this species continues to decline at the rate of recent years, it is most likely that it will soon be totally extinct. To prevent its disappearance , an International Committee for the Recovery of the Vaquita (CIRVA) has been created in order to implement a series of strategies and measures that ensure the recovery of the species.

These strategies consist of promoting the development and maintenance of the region of the Gulf of California, where the species is located, as well as promoting the practice of sustainable and environmentally friendly fishing, which does not cause any damage or impact on the conservation of the species.

In the official image below you can see more information about the measures or protection actions to prevent the extinction of the vaquita porpoise .

If you want to read more articles similar to Why the vaquita porpoise is in danger of extinction , we recommend that you enter our category of Endangered Animals .

Maria Anderson

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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