Environmental and socioeconomic perceptions about the extraction of ‘uçá’-crab (Ucides cordatus) in the Estuarine System of Itanhaém (southeast Brazil): contributions to conservation and management

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The ‘uçá’-crab (Ucides cordatus) is an endemic mangrove decapod crustacean with distribution along of Brazilian coast. This species participates in bioturbation of the sediments, the organic matter/energy flow, and in trophic chain in this coastal environment. Traditional coastal communities ‘caiçaras’ survive on capture and trading of this crustacean, which, being a typical extractive activity in Brazilian mangroves, can harm the environment when in disagreement with current regulations. The present study aimed to raise socioeconomic information associated with the ethnobiological knowledge of ‘uçá’-crab catchers from the Itanhaém River Estuary (SP), in relation to the conservation status of this species and mangrove. Crab catchers were obtained by the snowball technique and interviewed using a semi-structured questionnaire. The data were analyzed in a qualitative and quantitative way, through the Discourse of the Collective Subject, whenever possible supported statistically. The number of crab catchers who work in this estuarine system (n = 9), exceeded by 80% that indicated by the Fisheries Colony “Z-13”. All respondents belonged to the male gender, 67% of which come from the municipality itself, 33% working underground, which puts the management of the species at risk. Among the negative impacts on the mangrove, 100% of the collectors are concerned with its destruction, irregular occupation and suppression of riparian forest, while 78% mentioned the contamination by solid waste, indicating that monitoring and inspection actions are essential to management and conservation of this ecosystem.




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Revista Brasileira de Meio Ambiente, v. 8, n. 4, p. 175-195, 2020.

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