LIMA Oct 18 Peru said on Friday that it might
restrict shark fishing to curb the illegal slaughter of up to
15,000 dolphins per year - used as bait by informal fisherman -
following the release of footage documenting the practice.
Video taken by NGO Mundo Azul broadcast on Thursday shows
Peruvian fisherman harpooning dolphins, whose capture is banned
under Peruvian law, before skinning and throwing their bloodied
parts back into the ocean to lure sharks.
Mako and other shark species are sold legally for export,
especially to Asian countries who consume their fins as a
"We will pursue those committing these crimes," Deputy
Minister of Fisheries Paul Phumpiu told reporters. "We are
considering all forms of action, from bans and restrictions to -
in extreme cases - the prohibition of (shark)
Phumpiu said that a government investigation into the
process should be completed by mid-2014.
Mundo Azul estimates that between 7,000 and 15,000 dolphins
are killed in Peru every year because of the technique.
"It is clear that the entire fishing fleet for sharks in
Peru is involved in a systematic killing of dolphins," said
Stefan Austermuhle, executive director of Mundo Azul.
(Reporting by Lucas Iberico-Lozada and Reuters TV; Editing by