For those who can't read Dutch, here is a rough translation.
Great article by the way.
The tragedy of a delicacy!
In nature, the old adage is true: eat or be eaten. This is a law in which no animal to escape and that of every species a constant alertness in order to survive. But one species has a larger arsenal than the others in the house to defend themselves against potential enemies. The absolute winner in this ongoing battle for their lives is an exotic South American frog with a weight of less than 4 grams.
The golden poison dart frog (Phyllobates territorial awareness) lives in the tropical rainforests of Colombia and is the most poisonous species of our planet. The skin of these yellow amphibious distinguishes highly toxic batrachotoxine off. A single frog contains enough poison to 60 adult men, after a brief period of violent convulsions and severe cardiac arrhythmias, death in hunting. It should be clear: the golden pijlgifkikkertje has only friends in the jungles of Colombia!
The so-called fight, flight and freeze system is an effective model of survival in nature. Put simply enter the battle with the enemy, go off like a hare or verstar and pretend you're dead. It is a response of the autonomic nervous system and is controlled by the hormones adrenaline and cortisol. Most prey unconsciously put these tactics if they are attacked by predators and are usually well away with it.
Some species are on view as vulnerable in their defense against evil. Snails are a striking example of it. In the scientific literature more than 200,000 different species of these molluscs is described. Most snails live on land but there are snails that find their natural habitat in the water. The biggest zeeslakkensoort in the Caribbean archipelago, the great crown snail (Strombus gigas, queen pink wing horn or shell). These molluscs can reach huge sizes over 35 cm long and are on Bonaire called conch.
The mouth openings of the conch are not armed with rows of sharp teeth, so a fight is not an option. The statements: "He is as slow as a snail" and "That goes with the speed of a snail's pace" all emphasize that the possibility of flights to major crown snails not successful mission will be. However, the conch wear a safe house with him and this appears to most predators and other predators an impregnable fortress.
But people have less trouble literally cracking the beautiful woninkje of sea snails. After drilling a hole in the shell, is a vital muscle and cut the conch to its safe stronghold to surrender and leave. An uncertain future going.
In the 90 years of the last century in the Caribbean over 7 million kilograms karkovlees eaten. And its beautiful cottage highly coveted as a maritime souvenirs. The hands of many years of overfishing are the major crown snails now become rarer and consumption of conch fallen dramatically.
The conch is a herbivore and feeds on sea grass and algae that grow and live on the seabed of Lac Bay. Lac Bay is an enchanting lagoon fringed with mangrove vegetation in the south east of Bonaire. The turquoise bay is more than 80 football fields and is also an important foerangeergebied for sea turtles. The number of conch in Lac Bay is an alarming decline in recent decades, hollowed, so the alarm bells are ringing. In order to protect animals and the chance to recover, is since 2005 a total ban on catching conch on Bonaire. Partly because of the excessive control of this ban is still illegally hunted animals.
To the natural behavior of the living conch better mapping, there is research into the conch done. The animals are caught, weighed, measured, with a mark for aperture pre and put it back. In this way it is possible to collect valuable data from the conch and these animals in the future are better protected.
In addition, conservation organizations on Bonaire a true tsunami of actions initiated to the local population's awareness of this unique but also very critically endangered species. There is a fun carnival song (Shon Karko) devoted to the snail. There is also a large poster campaign (Ban Tres Karko Bek!) Was released and the inhabitants of Bonaire a sticker on their car sticking with the same title. To top it off it is even possible to adopt a conch!
But as long as an (illegal) market for conch, it will be difficult to hunt for the total elimination of molluscs. Bonaire's government is therefore constantly in consultation with local fishermen. Them more or less promised that in time, once again a healthy slug population in Lac Bay has developed, again limited to can fish delicacies. Some of the fishermen is also very skeptical about this commitment and fears that the period of the trapping ban in the future will be increasingly stretched.
Were the conch but not as tasty and had only one thousandth of the poison of the Colombian frog. Then the people are kept at arm's length and there might be again a healthy population of crown snails originated in the Caribbean which Lac Bay. The shell graveyard at Lac Cai, dating from the Indian time, as already impressive enough. There does not have an empty conch shell pierced more