On June 15, a fisherman on the Tien River, southern Vietnam, caught and killed a 63Kg Mekong giant catfish (Pangasianodon Gigas). This species is critically endangered, and is protected by Vietnamese law. The fish species, and many others in Vietnam’s waterways, are threatened by pollution and over fishing. Local fisher-folk state that such giant catfish were regularly seen prior to 1975, but have not been spotted in years.
Photo courtesy of Vietnam Net Bridge.
Today police confirmed that the fish was healthy prior to being caught. However, authorities were unable to press charges, as the fisherman sold the catfish to traders almost immediately. The fisherman is instead being educated about the specie’s precarious situation in an attempt to raise awareness.