With the help of local children, a team of conservationists has released more than 1,000 golden skiffia (Skiffia francesae), a freshwater fish found only in Mexico, into the species’ native range in the Teuchitlán River, Jalisco. The golden skiffia has not been seen in the wild since the late 1990s as the result of water extraction, pollution, and the introduction of invasive species.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species has classified the species as extinct in the wild. The events, in the midst of Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebrations, included formal speeches at the Guachimontones archaeological site visitor center, traditional dances and the official release of the fish.
Bringing the species back from the ‘dead’ is the result of collaborative conservation work between Michoacan University of Mexico, Chester Zoo, Goodeid Working Group and SHOAL (a programme of Re:wild and Synchronicity Earth).