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Story Publication logo July 26, 2013

Mexico: The Future of the Global Fishery


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The Sea of Cortez is—or was—a vast and lush underwater paradise. Industrial fishing operations are...

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Fishermen on a shrimp trawler outside Guaymas sort the morning's catch. Later in the season their nets will turn up mostly bycatch. Image courtesy of Harper's Magazine © Dominic Bracco II/Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

The Sea of Cortez used to be an abundant and diverse source of sea creatures. However, it is now being emptied of life by fishermen and trawlers. Popular fish, such as tuna, red snapper and shark, are all but gone. The Mexican government once pushed people towards fishing, increasing the number of fisherman. The result was too many fisherman and a sharp decline in fish populations. Erik Vance warns that what is happening in the Sea of Cortez should be seen as a warning signal for all of the world's oceans. Erik's article "Emptying the World's Aquarium," along with Dominic Bracco II's images, can be seen in the August issue of Harper's Magazine.


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