A goby-fry fishery in the northern Colombian Pacific Ocean
Migrations between freshwater and marine environments are a common strategy among gobies of the Sicydiinae sub-family. Sicydiinae post-larvae occur in high density to the extent of supporting artisanal fisheries. Here, we document for the first time in the tropical eastern Pacific Ocean (Colombia), an artisanal fishery based on sicydiine post-larvae (Sicydium salvini) returning to relatively short and steep rivers of the coast. The migration and harvesting is comparable to that of sicydiines elsewhere in the world (e.g. Dominica, West Indies) with a lunar periodicity and the use of similar fishing methods. Harvesting can be as much as 1.37 ton/month at a single village of ca. 5000 inhabitants. This catch corresponds to a removal of ca. 20 million post-larvae from the population. This fishery is unmanaged in Colombia, but represents an important alternative seasonal protein source for local villagers. Given the likely human population increase predicted for this area of the Colombian Pacific, a careful monitoring programme of this fishery is recommended.