There Are Fewer Than 30 Vaquitas Left on Earth

  • by: Care2 Team
  • recipient: Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin

The vaquita - the smallest relative of the dolphin - needs our help. The tiny cetacean that lives in the waters between mainland Mexico and Baja California is holding on a thread to survive. In the last few years, its numbers have plummeted, leaving no more than 30 of the species.

If the government doesn't take action to save the remaining vaquitas, they will become the latest animal to go the way of the dodo.

No one eats vaquita. Fishermen don't head out to sea hoping to reel one in. Instead, the animals are the innocent victims of a terrible gill net fishing industry that indiscriminately catches the vaquitas as bycatch while fishermen search for other prey.

Gillnets are enemy number one for the vaquita. According to studies, they kill up to 50% of the vaquita population each year. If fishermen continue to use these deadly devices, the vaquita could go extinct next year!

There is a U.S. law that could help give the porpoise a fighting chance. The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) has been one of the best tools America has to help stop the unnecessary deaths of marine mammals. The law bans the importation of commercial fish or fish products that have been caught using a technology that results in an unacceptable number of animals being killed or injured -- technology like gill nets used by fisherman in the Gulf of California.

Currently, however, the Trump administration has refused to implement the ban. There is no excuse for this inaction, especially considering the vaquitas incredibly precarious position.

Please tell Trump to enforce the MMPA like the law requires. Sign the petition and tell the president we must act to save the last remaining vaquitas.

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