OFA Quarterly Report
Fisheries and Aquaculture
The Office of Fisheries and Aquaculture, in close collaboration with
Pohnpei-based NGOs, have actively participated in meetings, seminars, and
conferences relating to activities to confront and make us ready for the
climatic changes in the atmosphere. Such atmospheric deviations cause much
earthly negative impacts as has been apparent in ocean currents in the region
and worldwide. OFA will continue to be an active participant in the future
climate change discussions.
While sharks are a
nuisance and threat to local artisanal fishers in this part of the Pacific
region, it has captured and captivated the attention and concern of individuals
like PEW and Kevin Rhodes, PhD, who collaborates with the University of Hawaii.
Dr. Rhodes visited Pohnpei this past January, to visit the Kehpara Grouper
spawning site and also to tag sharks. OFA offered him assistance reminiscent of
that which he received during his one-decade of Kehpara grouper monitoring and
tagging. Perhaps our understanding of the lives of the denizens of the deep
could well be ascertained by such effort.
A certain fact relating
to Pohnpei’s coastal fisheries remains crystal cler: the inshore fish stock of
Pohnpei is on the brink of fiasco. To help us restore the stock population
decline, the Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are at work. The effect of the MPAas
has been discussed and agreed upon, even by non-conservationists, to triple the
enforcement of these sanctuaries. Another priority is looming and will boom
quickly if encouragement is widened. This has to do with the community Pearl
farms surrounding Pohnpei proper and its outer-islands. Although not many in
number so far, pearl farm projects provide a glimpse of hope for interested
people living in far-flung communities of Pohnpei.
Nukuoro community pearl
project: Reputable of all, because of its size and harvest capability.
community-based and manned by two OFA farm laborers.
Ant farm: giving
further symbol to chief Sounihrek and his people.
Nett Point pearl farm:
supervised by COM Land Grant, under its chief marine scientist, Dr. Ito - a
Peniou pearl project:
newest and perhaps the smallest of all Pohnpei pearl farms, belonging to
Rosadelima and her husband, Piridolino Santos.
OFA is proud to have contributed to the development of these projects.
The COM Land Grant deserves much credit for providing technical assistance for
the pearl endeavor.
Fishery Foundation (OFCF) continues to effectively support fisheries needs of
Pohnpei, particularly OFA as it provided an intensive outboard motor that
utilized participants from outer-islands including Pohnpei. It opted to do major
work to repair and upgrade Lisoumwei - OFA’s only vessel. The vessel received
almost total facelift and is now operable and is being used frequently to
support basic and vital needs of the Pakein community. OFCF pledged to continue
supporting OFA’s basic fisheries needs, putting the government’s agency in a
mood of indebtedness. We realize the essence of friendship and cooperation.
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