By João Vitor Campos-Silva
This year, an important step was taken to empower local communities in protecting their territories. The idea is to expand the management of pirarucu to rural communities in the municipality of Itamarati. This work started four years ago with community meetings and social mobilization in the region. Last year, about 150 lakes were mapped to take part in an official fishing agreement, a fundamental step that establishes a zoning strategy for fishing activities. In October 2020, the team of Instituto Juruá, local association partners and 25 communities in the municipality of Itamarati began pirarucu counts in the lakes selected by the communities.
A total of 2,528 pirarucus were counted across 30 lakes. In the coming years, these communities will undergo an intense training process through the support and collaboration of already experienced communities and local associations in the mid-Juruá, such as ASPROC (Rural Producers Association of Carauari) and AMARU (Agroextractivist Residents Association of the Uacari Sustainable Development Reserve). In the near future, we expect all communities on the Juruá River to be empowered to protect their lakes autonomously, guaranteeing food security and income generation for local residents through the sustainable fishing of pirarucu and many other species.