The current marine resources status is changing the traditional view of the sea as an inexhaustible source. In consequence today iniciatives and strategies are promoted to bring the conservation of marine habitats and the recovery of overexploited species.
The situation of Costa Rican marine waters doesn’t escape to this reality. In fact, important marine resources have undergone a dramatic decline in the Eastern Pacific. So is the case of traditional fish populations as sea bass (Scianidae) and snappers (Lutjanidae) at artisanal coastal fisheries. Furthemore dolphinfish (Coryphaena hippurus) and billfishes (Istiophoridae) in advanced and media scale in pelagic waters. While the decline of commercial interest populations, the catches of other complementary species like sharks has increased. At the same time non commercial species like rays, eels, sea turtles, cetaceans and sea birds are more often captured by fishing gears.
In view of this scenario conservation initiatives and management actions are promoted for global fisheries. Reduce fishing effort, the creation of Marine Protected Areas, limits or landing quotas stand out within other. However, the lack of basic information doesn’t let an accurate management of marine resources. PRETOMA has worked together with the Costa Rican fishing sector carrying out research that provides the basic scientific information about Artisanal Fisheries (bottom line and gillnets), industrial (shrimp trawlers) and advanced (longline). At the same time PRETOMA is gathering scientific information related to migration, abundance and seasonally patterns of marine species. With Tagging programs and Sightings Networks, data related to the presence and behavior of hammerhead sharks is gathered.