Dec 16, 2010

The Wanted Got Busted: Kunimasu Was Caught!

The fish everyone is asking us about—yes, I mean Kunimasu – had been longed for and searched for for past 70 years! Now it has been rediscovered in a lake about 500km away from hometown.

Can you believe it?

The news have been a national sensation, because it really is romantic-- a wish of  fishermen that desperately tried to save the endangered species had just been revealed to have come true! They knew the chances were slim to none, but they tried anyway – not for their own sake but for the coming generation—that is us!

The fishermen, a record shows, have sent out 100,000 kunimasu eggs to a few lakes under a similar condition as Lake Tazawa: deep, clean, and low water temperature.

Lake Saiko was one of them. And the rest is as is reported by the media yesterday.
Our Wanted Campaign Poster from 1990s. Now "X"ed, for the case has been solved!

Everyone's big question: Is the posted reward still valid?



Back in 1990s, Tazawako Tourism Association (formerly known as Tazawako-machi Tourism Association) has promoted a campaign to carry on the wishes of local people that kunimasu may have survived elsewhere. The cash reward was 5,000,000 yen for the person that caught a kunimasu. Unfortunately, the campaign has been ended in 1998.

To us, the story symbolizes importance of natural environment and world peace. The channel construction from Tamagawa River has caused inflow of acidic water to Lake Tazawa. You might argue that it could have been avoided, but it was an inevitable situation in amidst World War II, when the entire country had been focusing on nothing but war footing. Despite the known risks, the people’s concern was never heard.

The Wanted campaign is first posted with a reward of 1,000,000 yen but no results. A few years later it was raised up to 5,000,000 yen. Years later, there was still no kunimasu found. The case had never been solved until yesterday. 

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