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Dec 4, 2020

Gillnets Believed to Be for Illegal Fishers from Guatemala

Several items were recovered, including plastic bottles filled with black sand used to anchor the gillnet, suggesting that the illegal fishing gear belongs to Guatemalan fishers. Both Smith and Carnegie say that it is an issue that has been plaguing these southern waters for years, despite interventions. Carnegie advises persons who come across this illegal practice to report it to the authorities.  


On the Phone: Neville Smith, Owner, Southern Eco Adventure Dive & Fishing Tour

“To be honest, I actually belief it is Guatemalans because they use a method of anchoring the nets whereby they use like two big Coca Cola bottles; we don’t sell those big sodas in Belize so definitely from Guatemala. And even the way they anchor it; I’ve never seen it before in Belize.”


Alyssa Carnegie

Alyssa Carnegie, Communications Director, OCEANA Belize

“Illegal Unreported and Unregulated fishing is definitely an issue; IUU fishing. We have seen countless examples from our co-managers and officials about the seizure of undersized or out of season fisheries products like conch or lobster so it is something that is very important and very necessary and very critical. We always advise to report it to the authorities. It is really important for them to be aware of where these nets are being set and very often they would have other information that would make prosecution possible. So for us, our advise has always been to report it, get the authorities out there to take the nets out of the water. Of course, you have very passionate Belizeans out there who take it upon themselves to take it out themselves.”

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