Gulf of California — Mexican wildlife authorities report the rescue of five California sea lions found entangled in fishing nets. The rescue was made by the National Commission of Natural Protected Areas (Conanp), through the Area of Protection of Wildlife and Islands of the Gulf of California.
La Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (Conanp) says that with the help of la Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente (PROFEPA) and the Secretaría de Marina (SEMAR), the five sea lions were successfully set free.
They report that three of the sea lions were young, less than a year old, while the other two were older, one being an adult female weighing 75 kilos.
They explain that gillnets use buoys at the top and weights at the bottom to be placed vertically in the water. Once they are placed, they move with the currents, capturing different species by entangling the body or gills, and being manufactured with a very resistant material, they can last a long time drifting. They say they have seen gillnets reach up to 800 meters long.
Conanp reports that the California sea lion is a species listed in the official Mexican standard NOM – 059 – SEMARNAT 2010 under the category of risk and is a species subject to special protection.