Countries argue over arowana


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The Silver arowana is at the centre of an dispute between Brazil and Colombia.

On the Brazilian stretches of the Amazon the Silver arowana is a popular food fish, but further upriver in Colombia baby arowana are being caught for the Japanese aquarium trade.

According to a report from Environment News Service, the two countries are now arguing over what to do to keep each other happy and prevent the species becoming overfished.

The two sides are going to debate ornamental fish exports versus food fishing for the species at a seminar in Bogota, Colombia, which starts today.

Brazilian authorities have noticed a drop in the abundance of Silver arowana in recent years (the species is one of the most widely seen in the fish market at Manaus) and have now prohibited fishing for the species between September 1st and November 15th.

The Colombian authorities further up the Amazon are also protecting the fish between November 1st and March 15th.

"They should be less liberal about exporting ornamental fish."

Henrique Pereira dos Santos of IBAMA, Brazil's powerful environmental protection institute, told Radiobras:

"We have conflicting legislation in different countries. We would like to get the other countries to be more protective.

"They should be less liberal about exporting ornamental fish.

The Silver arowana, Osteoglossum bicirrhosum, can reach a length of over 1m/39" and is an accomplished jumper.