Saturday, March 14, 2009

There's Hope!

Hello everyone,

Indonesian living overseas writes:

I read your blog on how everyone wanted to help out to save the reefs in indo. I think it is great to hear of so many people wanting to help. I like the idea very much, but I am not sure if it is going to work. I myself am Indonesian and I grew up there, saya masih bisa ngomong bahasa indonesia, but its really broken when I write it, LOL. The people just don't care there, its all about the money. The more the better. Its their mentality there in my opinion. Whatever corner you can cut to put more money in your pocket is a good thing. Its accepted and the norm there, its almost embedded into their society. The prestige of owning a really nice car and having a large house with 10 maids beats out the idea of saving the reef with a small hut to live in and no car to drive around in.

Eddie writes:

That is exactly why I keep emphasizing the fact that just training and leaving some equipment behind is not going to work. Somebody needs to follow up and supervise. You summed it up pretty good with your one paragraph - thanks!

Ok guys, for today's topic, I would like to talk about a local fishing village that came together to make a difference. They went from cyanide to net catching. The place is called Les Village up in Northern Bali. A video was made to document the process and is called "Fish don't cry". I obtained this video from Robert at Aquatic Specialties and Pets (wholesaler), my friend who has closed down since. The guys from Les Village actually came to the US to visit Robert. This video was subsequently given to him by the Les Village guys. Robert did good business with them for a while, but after a management change, everything went downhill. Robert asked me to go visit Les when I got to Bali.

It turned out that my current fish exporter friend in Bali were buying from Les Village. But the fish were coming in terrible. We decided to make the trip and go see them. It was kind of sad seeing the poor facility, nothing like the scenes I saw in the video. There were not even holding tanks. The fish were being kept in plastic bags. My friend eventually ended up sending them used glass tanks to hold the fish, and the quality drastically improved.

Unfortunately, all of my pictures from this trip is in my old lap top computer. I accidentally forgot to transfer those pictures to my new lap top. So for now, enjoy the video. My friend in Jakarta should be uploading it soon in the next day or so. You must watch as it is truly inspiring.

The biggest problem that I see to the environment in our trade, is not collecting wild corals. It is the use of cyanide by the fishermen. For every coral collector, you probably have a hundred fish catching guys. Can you imagine the destruction? Indonesia has a horrible reputation for having bad fish. Then there is another big group of fishermen who use cyanide to catch consumption fish - live groupers for the seafood trade.

A quick note before the video. My 5th part of "My Coral Adventures", aquaculture hunting in Bali has just been posted. You can follow this link to check it out.


1 comment:

Reef Playground said...

Really sad to hear that those kind of tactics are still being used in this day and age.

Aquaculture Northern Bali

November Corals Collection Part. 1

November Corals Collection Part. 2

Aquaculture - November Shipment

Coral Showcase - September 2008 Inventory

Holding Facility's Corals Collection Showcase 2007