Due to the conservation efforts Pirarucu, also known as arapaima has returned to the lakes of the Medio Jurua in Brazil.

 

About ‘pirarucu’

  • It can weigh up to 200 kilos (440 pounds), by far the largest of 2,300 known fish species in the Amazon.
  • It is found primarily in floodplain lakes across the Amazon basin, including the region of Medio Jurua.
  • It is one of the few fish species in the world that surfaces to breathe. It does that with a big splash, flashing its red tail out of the water.

 

Threats

  • The giant fish not so long ago nearly vanished from Jurua, due to unregulated fishing.
  • The illegal and unsustainable fishing left river and Indigenous communities struggling to catch their staple food.
  • And it left pirarucu designated as threatened with extinction, unless trade in the fish is closely controlled by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.