The piracatinga (Calophysus macropterus) fishery and its impact on river dolphin conservation: an update


Trujillo, F;

Additional Authors

Marmontel, M; VanDamme, P; Mosquera, F; Campbell, E; Gilleman, C; Utreras, V; Briceño, Y; Oliveira da Costa, M; Córdova, L; Tejeda, V; Del Aguila and & Usma, S.







Country / Region

South America

Document Type

Conference proceedings


Amazon river dolphin, Tucuxi

Conservation Measure

Fisheries management

Threat Keywords

Bait fishing and traditional medicine


One of the main threats to river dolphins in South America has been the illegal hunting of these species to use them as bait to catch a scavenger fish known as piracatinga. Brazil implemented a moratorium on this fishery from 2015 to 2020, but currently the catch seems to have started again. Colombia has a permanent moratorium from 2017 on the trade in piracatinga. In countries like Venezuela, Peru and Bolivia the capture of dolphins as bait for this species is confirmed. This paper analyzes the current situation of this threat country by country and calls for an articulated work to control this fishery with transnational characteristics.