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1 June 2002 A Case Study of Human Migration and the Sea Cucumber Crisis in the Galapagos Islands
Jason Bremner, Jaime Perez
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The sea cucumber fishing crisis in Galapagos is an example of the potential consequences of rapid migration, growing economic competition, and weak regulatory mechanisms. In a short period of time sea cucumber fishing has become the most inflammatory issue in the Galapagos. The key factors that allowed for the efficient exploitation of the new resource were not the fishermen themselves but rather the new fishing techniques and access to credit and markets. This suggests that the annual sea cucumber crisis is due to factors more complex than simply more fishermen generating greater sea cucumber catches. This paper examines census data and fisher registries to analyze population growth in the islands. A public opinion survey is used to determine the population's attitudes toward sea cucumber fishing and regulations. Qualitative interviews explore the history of the sea cucumber boom. Information from the sea cucumber monitoring program provides estimates for the annual sea cucumber catches.

Jason Bremner and Jaime Perez "A Case Study of Human Migration and the Sea Cucumber Crisis in the Galapagos Islands," AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment 31(4), 306-310, (1 June 2002).
Published: 1 June 2002

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