I will be offline for a few days as I will be returning to Isla Guadalupe aboard the Horizon to film great white sharks for WildCoast.net, Televisa SA, and Telemundo.
WildCoast.net is a California- and Mexico-based ocean conservation group that tackles a wide variety of ocean conservation issues but with a decidedly Spanish-speaking emphasis. That gets them involved in issues ranging from Baja, Mexico throughout Latin America and anywhere worldwide where a Spanish-speaking perspective can be effective. Televisa SA is one of Mexico's largest broadcasters and Telemundo services Hispanic U.S. and Mexican communities and all through Latin America.
WildCoast.net is working with these broadcasters to promote stories about shark conservation and shark ecotourism. While there is not a major market for shark fins in Latin America, there are commercial operations that engage in shark finning to meet Asian demand. Within their borders, there is primarily a limited demand for shark meat and then there is the greater lost tourism dollars from shark ecotourism when compared to the value of a dead shark. Along the coast of Baja, juvenile white sharks are caught for their meat and teeth; because of the white shark's slow rate of reproduction, this can have a profound impact on overall populations.
Whether or not a country is a major consumer of shark products, it's important that everyone understands the critical and necessary role that sharks play as ocean predators and scavengers. The oceans can't do without them.