GNR seize 162 kilos of sea cucumbers in Olhão
Photo: GNR

GNR seize 162 kilos of sea cucumbers in Olhão

Sea cucumbers are a protected species

GNR police seized 162 kilograms of sea cucumbers in Olhão on Wednesday (August 16).

During a routine inspection, GNR agents spotted a fisherman transporting a large haul of sea cucumbers in his boat in the Ria Formosa estuary.

The fisherman, 39, was identified, while the sea cucumbers, the boat and an oxygen tank were confiscated.

All sea cucumbers were still alive and were “returned to their natural habitat,” the police force said.

“As they are a protected species, capturing sea cucumbers without adherence to legal regulations or obligations imposed by the competent authority constitutes a crime against nature,” it added in a statement tot he press.

GNR police underline that the species is “crucial for aquatic ecosystems”, as sea cucumbers “recycle decomposed matter, effectively cleaning the seabed.”

They also stress that sea cucumbers are widely used in food and traditional medicine, primarily in the Asian market, where they have a high market value.

The police force adds that “all maritime resources must be used in a manner that ensures long-term environmental, economic, and social sustainability of fishing.”

By Michael Bruxo

[email protected]