Bahamas Promotes “Conch-servation”

Tuesday November 5th, 2013
conch shells in Bimini (CJ Photo)

conch shells in Bimini (CJ Photo)

A new initiative from the Bahamas National Trust is looking to help sustain the Queen Conch population in the country.

The aim is to promote a dialogue that will “result in best practices for the effective management of queen conch in the Bahamas,” with the ultimate goal of a sustainable queen conch population in the Bahamas.

A major issue is the harvesting of juvenile conch, or “rollers,” — according to Conch-servation; harvesting a single juvenile can mean “thousands of new conchs that will never be,” the organization says.

Conch, a type of marine mollusk, contributes millions of dollars every year to the economy of the Bahamas, and is among the country’s most popular foods.

The number of conch seems to have been on the decline, however, with some areas like one near Lee Stocking Island in the Exumas seeing as high as a 91 percent reduction in conch in the last two decades, according to the Trust.

The initiative is being supported by the Bahama Department of Marine Resources and other agencies, along with the Bahamas Reef Environmental Education Foundation, among others.

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