Deep-water shrimp fisheries in Latin America: a review
Commercial fisheries are expanding their activities into deeper water. The life history features of these deep-water resources make them more vulnerable to exploitation than most shallow-water resources. Moreover, the apparent lack of solid information about the ecology of most deep-water species represents a major limitation for the development and implementation of management strategies. This scenario has caused great concern regarding the sustainability of these resources and the possible environmental impacts on the deep-sea ecosystem. In Latin America, commercial fisheries are going deep as well, and considering the above-mentioned concerns, we felt the need to compile the available information about the deep-water shrimp resources and the current status of their fisheries in Latin America. Focusing on Mexico, Central America, Peru, Chile and Brazil, this review describes the exploited species, and, whenever available, the fishing fleet, fishery statistics, and management strategies. A total of 17 species (10 spp. of Penaeoidea; 7 spp. of Caridea) are of commercial interest in Latin America, but deep-water shrimps are currently fished only in Costa Rica, Colombia and Chile. An implemented management plan exists in Chile and Colombia, while Brazil approved fishery regulations for the aristeid fishery, which were never implemented. Considering the lack of information about the biology of the deep-water shrimps, which hinders the development of adequate management strategies, we see the urgent need to improve the communication and collaboration between the different stakeholders in Latin American. We suggest the establishment of a searchable and constantly updated database, which may serve as a valuable source of information for researcher and decision makers. Finally, we propose the development of regional research plans aimed towards supporting measurements for a sustainable use of deep-water shrimps in Latin America.