We are among the scientists who have documented the environmental and ecological changes to the Upper Gulf of California following the reduction in the Colorado River’s flow. We object to any suggestion that our research supports Manjarrez-Bringas et al.’s conclusion that the decline in the Colorado River’s flow is the reason for the decline in the population of the endangered vaquita porpoise (Phocoena sinus). Manjarrez-Bringas et al.’s conclusions are incongruent with their own data, their logic is untenable, their analyses fail to consider current illegal fishing practices, and their recommendations are unjustified and misdirected. Vaquita face extinction because of bycatch, not because of the lack of river flow.
Flessa, Karl W.; Calderon-Aguilera, Luis; Cintra-Buenrostro, Carlos E.; Dettman, David L.; Dietl, Gregory P.; Goodwin, David H.; Jacobs, David K.; Kowalewski, Michal; Nelson, Steven M.; Rowell, Kirsten; Schone, Bernard R.; Smith, Jansen A.; and Zamora-Arroyo, Francisco, "Vaquita Face Extinction from Bycatch. Comment on Manjarrez-Bringas, N. et al., Lessons for Sustainable Development: Marine Mammal Conservation Policies and Its Social and Economic Effects." (2019). Earth, Environmental, and Marine Sciences Faculty Publications and Presentations. 8.
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