Open letter to the Government of Panama
As sport fishermen, we support the current actions taken by the Panamanian Administration to protect the fishery and marine resources that is the major draw for us to visit Panama.
In order to encourage and lend support to the Government of Panama, we foreigners, Sport Fishing enthusiasts that travel to Panama to satisfy our hobby, would like to commit by your side as allies in this effort.
We feel that Panama’s fishery is in danger and we have already seen evidence of the decline in both quality and quantity of the captures.
We would like to express our concerns regarding certain practices that are not respective of the environment and are not in line with our vision of Sport Fishing.
To discourage these unsustainable practices, we state and affirm that we will not patronize fishing lodges and operations that cater to spear fishermen.
We also will not patronize Fishing lodges that sell fish, even that deemed bi-catch, for a profit, knowing that this practice is forbidden by law.
We will frequent nor patronize lodges, guides or tour operators that kill the following species, which we as Sport Fisherman consider highly prized Game Fish.
• Roosterfish (Nemastistius pectoralis) • Cubera Snapper (Lutjanus novemfasciatus) • Goliath Grouper ( Epinephelus quinquefasciatus) • All Billfish (Includes Sailfish, Marlin – all types) • Blue Trevally (Caranx melampygus) • Tarpon (Megalops Atlanticus)
We therefore ask that Boat Captains, Guides and Fishing Lodge owners that:
• The above species are strictly catch and release • That all Cubera Snapper are properly vented and returned to the water safely o That all boats are equipment with the proper hollow needles to accomplish this task. o That Captains are property trained in the procedure to vent the fish’s air bladder before returning it to the water
• That only one tuna per boat, per day is kept. • With regards to other species, including Dorado and Mullet, Queen, Vermillion Snapper, we ask them to implement a strict policy of keeping one fish per angler, per day for consumption.
We feel that with proper regulation, we can be successful in preserving the Sport Fishing Industry which will continue to ensure our annual visits to Panama.
We ask to all Fisherman in the community and potential customers to sign this petition.
Affixing your signature will demostrate to the principal actors of the fishing sector, that we are very concerned and committed to the conservation of the valueable marine resources.