Overfishing off the Gulf of California
By Rebekah Ingersoll
Overfishing is a process in which too many fish
are caught and results in the depletion of the
population of fish which then leads to the
disruption in the system it cannot support. This
process can result from a number of different
Catching too many adult fish that cannot
reproduce fast enough.
Pirate fishing (illegal fishing)
Exceeding the carrying capacity a fishery
Massive bycatch of juvenile fish.
Destructive fishing practices.
Overfishing leads to many problems such as endangering the oceans
ecosystem as well as the future for people who rely on seafood as a food
and economic source. The global fishing fleet is 2-3 times larger than what
the ocean can support.
• Unsustainable Fishing:
90% of the worlds fisheries are being
exploited or overfished. This is the leading
threat to ocean life and marine habitats.
Countless unwanted fish and other
animals die from these fishers.
• 52% of the worlds fisheries are
exploited, 32% are completely
overexploited, depleted and are
currently trying to recover from this
This is a GLOBAL problem. We will be focusing on the Gulf of California
Here are a few examples:
• Southern Chile
• Coastal East Africa
• The Grand Banks
• Irish Sea
• Pacific Ocean
• Made up of Northern, Central
and Southern regions of the
• Approximately 700 miles of
• 37 islands that play vital roles
in flora and fauna life.
• One of the largest marine
ecosystems in the world.
• UNESCO World Heritage Site
• State Party is Mexico
• The Gulf of California has been known as the aquarium of the ocean. Its
abundance of various marine animals such as 170 different sea birds, over 700
species of fish and a breeding ground for many other marine animals. Not to
mention a seawater highway for migrating animals. However, commercial fishing
is starting to take its toll on this stretch of waters early in the 1950’s.
• Early protection from the Audubon Society in the 1950’s and 60s to start studying
areas of coast and islands of the Gulf. In 1962 the Mexican government granted
protection towards efforts of conservation, called Marine Parks.
How does this problem affect
Overfishing creates a problem for
people on a global spectrum. Coastal
cities or small towns that depend on
local fishing can be deeply affected by
overfishing. For the Gulf of California
the ecosystem is suffering from this
act, which then effects its residents.
• Nearly 6 million people are
estimated to depend on fishing for
food and means of support.
• 75% of Mexico’s total annual fish catching is done in the Gulf.
• Due to overfishing it has decreased the population of many marine
species. This leads to a significant problem for people as well as the
• MSC-certified seafood products.
This means people are buying a
product that is certified by the
Marine Stewardship Council that
only support sustainable fishing
• Safe catch limits.
• Controls on bycatch.
• Protection of habitats all serve
as environmental correctors.
• Most importantly one of the
biggest ways to fix the issue is
stronger monitoring of oceans
and resilient enforcement of
• "Gulf of California." WorldWildlife.org. World Wildlife Fund, 16 Apr. 2015. Web. 14 Dec.
• Henrichmann, Warnstedt J. "Overfishing in the Gulf of California." DW.COM. Global 3000,
18 May 2015. Web. 14 Dec. 2015. <http://www.dw.com/en/overfishing-in-the-gulf-of-
• Lee, Mercedes, and Carl Safina. "The Effects of Overfishing on Marine Biodiversity by
Mercedes Lee and Carl Safina." SraWeb: Lending Voices for a Healthy Ocean. N.p., 1995.
Web. 2015. <http://www.seaweb.org/resources/articles/writings/safina php>.
• "Overfishing -- Pristine Seas -- National Geographic." National Geographic. National
Geographic, n.d. Web. 14 Dec. 2015.
• "Overfishing and Destructive Fishing Threats." Reef Resilience. N.p., 2 Sept. 2015. Web.
14 Dec. 2015. <http%3A%2F%2Fwww.reefresilience.org%2Fcoral-
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