Vanishing Vaquita - Oceana USA
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October 29, 2008

Vanishing Vaquita

Vaquita, Eye

If you haven’t seen whale trackers, it’s a very cool documentary series about whales, dolphins and porpoises and the international scientists researching them.One of the current series follows scientists in the northern gulf of California (the Sea of Cortez) this month as they follow the rare vaquita marina, or desert porpoise. The vaquita, dubbed the desert porpoise because their strip of ocean is wedged between the deserts of Northwestern Mexico and Baja California, is the most critically endangered of all cetaceans, and what few are left (an estimated 150 individuals) are caught as bycatch by local fishermen’s nets, particularly gillnets.You can read more about the expedition and watch the vaquita video — check it out. And while you’re at it, you can watch another episode, “Fishy Business,” about illegal driftnet fishing in the Meditteranean. The episode features the work of the Oceana Ranger in Europe and an interview with Oceana’s Xavier Pastor.