Change in Length and Weight of Holothuria mexicana Sea Cucumber During Processing
Arlenie Rogers, Kevin Novelo, Donovan Leiva Biology Department, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Belize Environmental Research Institute, Belize
Vol. 2, Issue 1, 2019 DOI: 10.33277/CESARE/002.001/01
Knowing the conversion ratio of processed sea cucumbers is important in determining the amount harvested from the wild. In Belize, the sea cucumber fishery was opened from 2009-2016. Estimating the amount harvested from the wild was especially difficult since sea cucumbers were exported semi-processed or dried. Dry weights were used to
estimate the catch, yet the total allowable catch (TAC) was set based on wet weight. In this study, sea cucumbers were collected monthly for eight months and processed. The largest and heaviest individuals
came from Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and were found during the reproductive months. On average individuals lost about 54% of their total length and 84% of their body weight. The majority (87%) of all the processed sea cucumbers were of inferior quality. Sea cucumber exporters and fishers need more training in sea cucumber processing.
Length and weight, Sea Cucumber, Holothuria mexicana, processing, total allowable catch