09 Apr Lessons Learned from the Banda Deep Sea Snapper Fisheries Project

From March 29 to April 30, 2024, CTC successfully conducted a learning exchange and dissemination of the lessons learned from the Banda Deep Sea Snapper Fisheries Project at Gedung OK Makatita in the Banda Islands. The two-day event marked a significant milestone in the efforts to conserve and sustainably manage fisheries resources, especially deep sea snapper and grouper in the area,

 The primary objective of this event was to disseminate the invaluable data collected over a span of two years as part of the Banda Deep Sea Snapper Fisheries Project. This pilot project was a collaborative effort between CTC, Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN), and People and Nature Consulting International (PNCI). Funded by the esteemed David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the project focused on capacity-building for snapper fishers and other stakeholders in the Banda Islands, with the ultimate goal of establishing a robust fishery monitoring program.

One of the main highlights of the project was the collection of Banda Sea snapper and grouper stock data in the Banda Islands, involving 31 local fishers who were trained to gather fish catch data using the Captain/Crew Operated Data Reporting System (CODRS) method. This grassroots approach not only yielded highly accurate data but also empowered local fishers. Through better information about the type, location, and quantity of fish caught, fishers would bridge, if not close, this information gap, enhance the knowledge of resource status and trends, and improve their resource monitoring.

Opened by CTC Maluku Portfolio Manager, Purwanto, there were 31 participants who joined the learning exchange on March 29, consisted of Pokmaswas (Pokmaswas Ay, Pokmaswas Rhun, Pokmaswas Saparua, Pokmaswas Nusa Penida, Pokmaswas Buano), Kewang or customary surveillance unit (Kewang Haruku and Kewang Portho), Maluku-based civil society organization (Lembaga Pengembangan & Pembangunan Masyarakat Pesisir dan Pulau Kecil, Women of Negeri Lonthoir, Kelompok Konservasi Hatta), as well as NGOs (Baileo Maluku, Mollucas Coastal Care, Toma Maju Lease) and governmental agencies including the Maluku Department of Marine and Fisheries Affairs, TWP Laut Banda, PSDKP Satker Banda, and others. It facilitated networking among stakeholders, fostering partnerships  key for the continued success of conservation efforts in the region. 

“I am very happy to be involved in this activity. At this moment we can convey our concerns to the relevant agencies. Hopefully, in the future this program can be continued because it is useful for knowing fish data in the Banda Islands. I am ready (to participate) if later activities like this are held again”, said Senen, Pokmaswas Rhun.

The dissemination of the lessons learned from the Banda Deep Sea Snapper and Grouper Fisheries Project was an eye-opener for all the 86 stakeholders who participated in the event.  The study results suggested that generally, deep-sea snapper and grouper fisheries in the Banda Islands are threatened by overfishing.

In particular, the economically valuable target species such as Etelis spp., Aphareus spp., Trevally are registered as “red-listed” because they are often caught as juvenile, thus potentially reducing their reproductive rates.

“Results from this study will also be communicated to the provincial marine affairs department. We hope that our current data will serve as a reference for the Government to formulate policies for improved fisheries management,” said Purwanto.

Of equal importance, from the data collected, we have an interesting finding—Plectranthias yamakawai, a species from the family Serranidae, sub-family Anthiadinae, previously unrecorded in Indonesia was found in the Banda Sea and is now documented in our data. This species has previously been documented only in Japan, Taiwan, and the Samoa Islands, as indicated by FishBase records to date.

In conclusion, CTC hopes to have disseminated the invaluable fisheries data of fish stocks, trends, and status collected from the implementation of Banda Deep Sea Snapper Fisheries Project. It is hoped that data, findings, and insights from the project will further contribute to robust monitoring programs and informed recommendations and decision-making of fisheries management in Banda Islands. Coupled with empowering capacity-building activities, fishers, policymakers, governmental bodies, and other stakeholders would be directly involved in and supportive of further efforts to ensure sustainable fisheries. By fostering collaboration and sharing knowledge, CTC’s efforts to the preservation of biodiversity, the enhancement of livelihoods for local communities, and the protection of the fisheries resources for future generations.

Text: Adam Putra, Purwanto, Kasman, Gede Wawan, Geertruidha Adelheid Latumeten
Photos: Adam Putra/CTC, Kasman/CTC, Hilda/PNCI

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