Reproduction of sea lions on Espiritu Santo Island increased from 500 to 700; only area that increased

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In Espiritu Santo Island, it was the only region in the Gulf of California where the number of sea lions increased, said the UABCS researcher.

Espiritu Santo Island has been the only region in the Gulf of California where the colony of sea lions has increased, in the last decade from 500 to 700 species in the Natural Protected Area (NPA), informed the researcher of the Autonomous University of Baja California Sur (UABCS), Hiram Rosales Nanduca.

“This colony, out of 13 identified in the Gulf of California, went from 500 to 700 individuals in the last decade; the only colony that has not only remained stable, but has slightly increased its numbers is the one in Los Islotes,” said the researcher during a tour of the Archipelago National Park, Espiritu Santo Island.

The above, after commenting that the population of sea lions in the Gulf of California has been reduced “dramatically” due to the increase in water temperature, although on the islets of Espiritu Santo Island the species is growing, they said.

According to data from the Center for Scientific Research and Higher Education of Ensenada, La Paz unit (Cicese), the group of Zalophus californianus decreased by 65% between 1991 and 2019, going from 45,000 to 15,000 sea lions, due -among other factors- to the increase in sea temperature by one degree Celsius in the Gulf of California, they said.

Finally, Hiram Rosales assured that the fact that people are aware and that fishing has been limited near the island has been beneficial for the sea lions to be able to come to a place to rest or carry out their reproductive and breeding activities, which contributes to their health.

Information from Big Fish

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