‘Aquatic cocaine’: Fish bladders are latest Mexican smuggling commodity

Chad Serrate:

A 28 year old man was stopped for what seemed like a regular drug bust. The Mexican Police proceeded to open the plastic bags and found 121 fish-swim bladders or 39 kilos of “aquatic cocaine”. The fish used is a Totoaba Bass and as a commodity it has a Hong Kong street value of 750,000$. The bladder is used for cooking, health, and other things in its dried state. Researchers say that these illegal smugglers profit just as much as a regular bust of cocaine. The high demand comes from Asian countries specifically and these fish are caught in the Sea of Cortez in Mexico. The high demand has led to the species becoming endangered and also many others as bycatch. Main poaching activities is where the police patrol for the large populations of these fish found there. As this demand for dried bladder of this fish increases the animal could be extinct and endanger many other species.


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