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Fijians urged not to exploit mud crab population

March 8, 2021 9:25 am

The Fiji Local Marine Managed Network is emphasizing the need for people to actively engage in smart fishing practices.

FLMMA representative Taru Veibi says they have noted that more Fijians returning to their village because of the COVID-19 pandemic are heavily reliant on fishing for sustenance and income generation.

Veibi says more women are now resorting to catching mud crab as opposed to only three or four per village prior to COVID-19.

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She adds the growing population in rural communities, villages and traditional, family, Vanua and religious obligations are some of the causes for over-harvesting of mud crabs.

Pacific Community Fisheries Advisor Margaret Fox says they are encouraging crab fishers to leave smaller crabs to allow them to grow into the legal side.

Under the Ministry of Fisheries Act, mud crabs under 12.5 centimeters or five inches aren’t allowed to be sold.

The two organizations are working with the 4FJ Fish Smart campaign in promoting best fishing practices.

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