The sea turtle played a major role as far as fishing was concerned from the beginning of the XX century. Its importance declined from 1950 on but in 1973 production was estimated at 50.000 kilograms / year basically represented by Tortuga Carey (Eretmochelys imbricata). The creation of the national park in 1972 made the capture and trading of turtles as well as the extraction of its eggs an illegal activity.
The prohibition of the use of nets in 1994 has also decreased the number of catches. It is worth mentioning that these two strategies have contributed somewhat to the increase of turtles sighted at the archipelago. However the clandestine fishing of turtles (when they come out to lay their eggs) and the destruction of the nests are activities which have not been totally eradicated.