YAQU PACHA Annual General Meeting 2024

Yaqu Pacha Annual General Meeting 2024

On Friday, 19.04.2024 from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m., this year's Annual General Meeting took place in the Natural History House of Nuremberg Zoo and online via Zoom. Dr. Lorenzo von Fersen (1st Chairman YAQU PACHA e.V.) led through the event and we had again invited 5 of our biologists and partners from South America and the USA to report on our cooperation and the joint projects.

Furg Brasil Ecomega Franciscana Dolphin 25 Year Old Years Eduardo Secchi

Prof. Eduardo Secchi from the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande FURGECOMEGA kicked things off. We are already connected by a 28-year partnership and now 25 years in the protection of the La Plata dolphin – Franciscana – Toninha (Pontoporia blainvillei). Prof. Secchi emphasized again that the greatest dangers for the La Plata dolphin are bycatch and that we continue to work together to reduce bycatch of this endangered dolphin species. Through the work at the university and contacts with government circles, contacts with political decision-makers are now also being developed. Prof. Secchi shared that there will be talks about the establishment of a marine national park in Brazil as late as April 2024, which would be crucial for the protection of the La Plata dolphin.

Lajam Solamac Consorcio Franciscana Yaqu Pacha

alliance for franciscana dolphin

The next speaker was Dr. Aricia Duarte-Benvenuto from the University of São Paulo, Brazil. She is a veterinarian and part of the rehabilitation group for La Plata dolphins. For stranded La Plata dolphins , this group of specialists was created throughout the distribution area of the La Plata dolphin to rescue stranded Franciscana dolphins – toninhas and rehabilitate them in specially equipped facilities. The work of this group is divided into 3 departments, rehabilitation, nutrition (special milk) and the examination of dead animals (necropsy). Ms. Duarte-Benvenuto once again emphasized the decisive progress that has already been achieved by these working groups and how important the exchange of veterinarians among each other is.

orphaned Franciscana Calves

Franciscana Working Groups La Plata Delfin

alliance for franciscana dolphin

Reduce ByCatch Dolphins Federico Sucunza Gemars

Afterwards, Dr. Federico Sucunza GEMARS reported on our joint project to reduce bycatch in La Plata dolphins – Franciscana – Toninha and the Lahille dolphin. A simple and inexpensive method is used in which empty (air-filled) plastic bottles are mounted in the fishing nets. The air trapped in the bottles reflects the echolocation sounds of the dolphins and the dolphins recognize the fishing nets as an obstacle and avoid them. Dr. Sucunza reported an 85% decrease in bycatch among fishermen using this method. Therefore, discussions with fishermen and fishing communities are an important part of our project in order to advise them and convince them of this method.

bycatch dolphins plastic bottles pet

bycatch dolphins fishermen fisherman

Franciscana Dolphins Toninha La Plata Delfin Yaqu Pacha Thank You

veterinary medicine conservation dolphins

The next speaker was Dr. Cynthia Smith, President and CEO of the National Marine Mammal Foundation NMMF in the USA. Ms. Smith presented Operation GRACE, which focuses on the education and training of veterinarians (capacity building). We have been working together successfully for many years and there have already been several joint workshops to train veterinarians, who can then be used in different areas to rescue and rehabilitate the animals. The focus here is on the rescue and rehabilitation of the La Plata dolphins and the Amazon river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis). Last year, for example, the teams were on site together to rescue the river dolphins in Lake Tefé in Brazil.

Franciscana Dolphin Brazil Uruguay Argentina La Plata Dolphin

Amazon River Dolphins

River Dolphin Veterinary Workshop Yaqu Pacha

50 anos projeto botos da lahille dolphins tursiops gephyreus

Afterwards, Dr. Pedro Fruet PROJETO BOTOS, KAOSA presented our project to save the last 600 Lahille Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops gephyreus). He began with a review of the project and reported that work on the protection of this endangered dolphin species began in Brazil 50 years ago. Dr. Fruet explained the milestones that were achieved during the course of the project through our cooperation. In order to be able to work even more effectively and specifically on the protection of this highly endangered dolphin species, a 5-year action plan for the rescue of the Lahille dolphin has now been developed, which we will now implement together.

milestones tursiops gephyreus

projeto gephyreus brasil uruguay yaqu pacha

5 years action plan tursiops gephyreus lahille bottlenose dolphin

thank you yaqu pacha

At this point, we would like to thank all partners, members and supporters of YAQU PACHA. Only with your help is it possible for us to work successfully on our species conservation projects.

The minutes of the YAQU PACHA Annual General Meeting will also be available here on our website shortly.