More than 2,000 hatchery-produced rabbitfish (Siganus lineatus) juveniles from the Palau Community College Multi-species Hatchery in Ngermetengel were delivered to a newly established Aquapro Fish Farm in Koror State on Jan. 11, 2018.
This farm is operated by a partnership of three local fishermen: Tmerukl Shmull, Jay Okada, and Godwin Ito—all residents of Koror State.
The release of these fingerlings is an offshoot of the recently concluded Palau Aquaculture Workshop that was held at PCC last September 2017, which created a partnership between the Bureau of Marine Resources, The Nature Conservancy, and PCC to promote community livelihood and food security through aquaculture development in the country.
Of the species that were identified for commercial production, the rabbitfish ranks second in priority.
Currently, the country’s Aquaculture Working Group aims to establish at least 20 pilot farms all over Palau in 2018.
Research on the refinement of the seed production technique for the two species of rabbitfish—“klesebuul” (S. lineatus) and “meas” (S. fuscescens)—has been undertaken and demonstrated at PCC hatchery with the funding support coming from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture through the College of Micronesia Land Grant Program and Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture.
Aside from providing free rabbitfish juveniles to the fish farmers, PCC-CRE also provides technical assistance by giving advice on proper husbandry, feeding management, and monitoring of environmental parameters in their farms. (PR)