Mangaluru, Aug 05, 2017: Speaking to media on aug 4, Friday, the association president Krishna D Suvarna said that the scarcity of fish in the sea is due to the intensive and over fishing. The Fishermen’s Deep Sea Trawl Boat Association in Malpe has aserted to impose self-ban on catching small fish as it has resulted in acute shortage of fish and declining of fishing trade in the coast.
Small fish are caught in larger scale and volume, even during the breeding season. The fish with eggs in the womb are falling prey in nets as fishing is more in dark nights using high voltage lights. The fishermen, who venture into the fishing at night focus on the breeding place where the fish make space to lay eggs and as they are attracted towards the light, the fish stop laying eggs and move upwards and are trapped in the nets. The unscientific fish farming has led to the decrease in the number of fish, he said.
Each small fish weighs somewhere 10 to 25 grams and costs Rs 10 per kg, while the bigger fish, when fully grown, weigh 250 grams to 10 kg. The bigger fish are priced at Rs 100 to Rs 1,000 per kg. The small fish nets used for catching fish has also exponentially inflated the destruction. He said that the association has imposed self-ban on catching of small fish and it is also against using the small fish nets. There are 1,000 Deep Sea Trawl Boats in Malpe, which are the highest in the state and the association has a large memberships. There are nearly 64 various fishing organisations and meetings would be held frequently at least once in a month. Appeals letters carrying the message would be sent across widely.
An international congress would be held in Delhi by National Fish Forum in November, wherein the issue would be raised. The message would also be conveyed to the fishermen from outside districts and states, not to catch small fish.The fish drought should be dealt sternly as the problem is increasing every year. The Deep Sea Bull Trawl Boat operators have also been instructed to venture into sea only after August and not early. The Malpe fishermen are using 30 mm fish net in place of 16 mm net, which is detrimental for small fish, he expressed concern.
Suvarna urged the government to ban the manufacturing of small fish nets and take strict action against the factories manufacturing the small size nets. In Maharashtra and Gujarat, the governments have banned the fishing of small fish and are supporting the fishermen to purchase the bigger nets by providing incentives, he stated.
He said the Marine Product Export Development Authority should also intervene and take action. The catching of small fish should be banned completely. Fish drought will be a major problem and would massively affect the fish trade, he expressed apprehension.
A strong message should be sent across the fishermen community over the impending danger and awareness created in civil ociety, if this crime is continued - i,e: catching small fish. The association has also appealed the police head and deputy commissioners of coastal districts to take action in this regard.