Societal services : Living resource enhancement through community farming of ornamental & bait fishes

CMLRE as part of its societal development initiative is attempting to standardize non-invasive fish propagation technologies of selected marine ornamental finfishes which are expected to reduce the fishing pressure on the wild stocks and enhance the living standards of coastal communities. Efforts made in this direction by CMLRE in the past have resulted in the development of breeding technology for a few clown, damsel and cardinal fish species. A society was formed under the Department of Women Welfare and Child Development, Lakshadweep with an intention to undertake nursery rearing of ornamental fishes.

SS

In continuation of the above, an environment friendly sustainable approach is planned aiming conservation of wild resources while ensuring the interests of the islanders who are the custodians of these ecologically sensitive environments. Scarcity for live baits is often reported as a limiting factor for the expansion of tuna fishery in the Lakshadweep Islands. Continuous exploitation of live baits from the lagoons has resulted in a drastic depletion of natural stocks. The disappearance of baitfish in the reefs warrants for an alternate option. The much sought after humbug damsel (Dascyllus aruanus) and bait fishes such as sapphire damsel (Pomacentrus pavo) and green chromis (Chromis viridis) are not standardised for hatchery production so far. CMLRE has plans to develop artificial propagation techniques for these fishes through non-invasive captive breeding protocols. A considerable portion of the hatchery reared seeds will also be sea-ranched to enhance the natural stocks. Further, it is also considered establishing a Satellite Field Station at East Coast to cater to the needs of Marine Living Resources related activities of CMLRE, wherein experimental evaluation of larger marine organisms of aesthetic value in captive conditions will be attempted to enable the country to venture in to the field of oceanarium science.