SEOUL, Sept. 20 (Korea Bizwire) – Triton shells, classified as a first-grade endangered species, are being illegally sold at certain raw fish restaurants on Ulleungdo. The shells made an appearance on a popular entertainment TV show but, the scene was removed due to the ensuing controversy.
The Triton shell, the largest univalve shell, holds the status of a first-grade endangered species and is nationally protected. Mere possession of Triton shells can lead to imprisonment for up to three years.
According to Representative Lee Eun-ju’s office, a member of the Environment and Labor Committee at the National Assembly from the minor Justice Party, the civic organization ‘National Park Conservation Network’ received a tip regarding the illegal sale of Triton shells at restaurants on Ulleungdo.
Following the tip, the organization conducted a field survey on September 2, confirming that Triton shells were indeed being sold or stored at three raw fish restaurants on the island.
The Triton shell has been classified as a first-grade endangered species by the Ministry of Environment and designated as a nationally protected species by the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.
The Triton shell holds significant ecological value as it is the natural predator of starfish, often seen as a harmful marine pests due to their detrimental impact on the marine ecosystem.
In the past, Triton shells were commonly found along the southern coast. However, their numbers have drastically declined due to indiscriminate harvesting, either for ornamental purposes or consumption.
The suspicion of Triton shells being illegally sold on Ulleungdo arose after their appearance in the trailer of the MBC entertainment TV show ‘I Live Alone,’ broadcasted on August 25. During the program, a guest was seen holding a Triton shell kept in an fish tank. This scene caused a stir in online communities, and subsequently, the scene was removed from the official trailer available on the show’s website.
J. S. Shin (email@example.com)