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Expert Cites Depleting Live Fish Habitats in Malaysia

Expert Cites Depleting Live Fish Habitats in Malaysia

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A live fish market in Tawau, Malaysia (Photo courtesy of CTI Southeast Asia Regional Project Management Office)

A live fish market in Tawau, Malaysia (Photo courtesy of CTI Southeast Asia Regional Project Management Office)

Fishing grounds in some areas of Malaysia are being depleted due to improper fishing practices, an expert on live reef food fish trade (LRFFT) warned.

Geoffrey Muldoon, LRFFT strategy leader for the WWF Coral Triangle Program, shared data indicating massive fishing of juvenile leopard coral trout (plectropomus leopardus) which are then stocked in cages until the appropriate size is attained.

“This forced fishers to move to new and unexhausted fishing areas while continuing unsustainable practices and as a result, new fishing grounds are getting depleted,” Muldoon said.

Muldoon gave his assessment at a recent meeting with members of the Coral Triangle Initiative Southeast Asia (CTI-SEA).

Aside from the data on fishing stocks, Muldoon also showed maps indicating the pattern of depletion of fishing grounds.

The expert gave his recommendations on how to address the issues facing Malaysia’s live fish trade including an ecosystem approach to fisheries management.

In addition, he shared the various aspects of trade such as engagement with industry along the supply chain, promoting best practices for grouper cage culture, and working on the demand side with consumer markets in Singapore and Hong Kong.

The CTI-SEA and WWF Coral Triangle Program meeting is expected to strengthen partnership and information exchange between the two groups to achieve the project’s goals for the Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Eco-region.

The Asian Development Bank supports the CTI-SEA in its goals to increase the resilience of coastal and marine ecosystems and human communities to threats arising from climate change and human-induced impacts in Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines, specifically the Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Ecoregion priority seascape in the Coral Triangle.

(Photo and story courtesy of the CTI Southeast Asia Regional Project Management Office, with additional inputs from CTKNetwork.org)

 

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