The for the conservation and the sustainable

The Yucatan state’s coastal zone has been of critical importance for its
inhabitants given its richness in natural resources. These resources are used
for food, employment, economic, energetic, and aesthetic purposes, as well as
for their intangible value (Medina-González et al. 2004). The principal uses of
natural resources in this region include (Medina-Gonzalez et al. 2004):

a)     
Fishing
activity;

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b)     
salt
production;

c)     
establishment
of summer houses and tourism development; and

d)     
maritime
development infrastructure.

From them, fisheries play an important role in the
region as a source of income, food, and employment for more than 15,000
households (Flores-Nava et al. 2016), as well as their economy as an important
volume of landings is oriented to exportation. Most of the catches are
concentrated on demersal or sedentary species such as Caribbean spiny lobster,
octopus, demersal fish and sea cucumber.

 

The sea cucumber fishery is a recently opened fishery in the area, becoming highly
important for coastal livelihoods given the benefits derived from its entire
value chain (FAO 2017). However, the fast development of the fishery has also
brought threats to this fishing resource and several social problems becoming a
greater concern for fishers, academics, and the government; and a hot topic for
research and solution-finding to these conflicts.

 

The objective of this research is to address the sea cucumber fishery
in the Yucatan state focusing on the importance of this activity and posing
possible pathways for the conservation and the sustainable use of this
resource. The content of this paper is structured in nine sections as follows. The
first section provides basic information about
the resource and the geographical distribution. Followed by an explanation of
the historical development and the importance of the fishery in Mexico. Harvesting,
processing, and marketing processes are
also addressed to broadly describe the fishery. The last section exposes the main
problems faced by small-scale communities,
as well as recommendations and possible actions that could to be implemented
for the conservation and the sustainable use of this fishing resource.