A simple way to find seafood products in seagrass supermarket.
Part 1: Hand push net
Amazing coastal communities in remote areas around the world finding seafood from the Marine supermarket.
I impress a traditional knowledge and its creative ideas of fishing gears to supporte their seafood products from time to time. As a marine conservationist, I am very keen to go out to the sea to observe the security of seafood. During my travel, I always capture snapshots and document traditional livelihoods and the gears that they use as well as how much they can collect each day. Because of sea lover, I would like to promote an environmentally friendly practises. This is a starting point to write this blog.
May - June 2013, I have the opportunity to conduct seagrass baseline survey in Kampot, Cambodia. There is the largest seagrass meadow in Southeast Asia which is needed update the status. During my field work on the seagrass bed, I found a local fisherman using a simple traditional fishing gear name "Hand Push Net". It makes from two rattan sticks and cotton net. He finds shrimps on the seagrass bed by walking with the hand put net in front. When its heavy weight enough, he lifts the net up to collect only shrimps and release other marine animal such as small crab, sponges, small fishes.
Many people might feel that this fishing gear may damage the seagrass. But from my observation, hand push nets in both Phuket in Thailand and Kampot in Cambodia are not totally destroy seagrass patch. It may grab some part of seagrass leaves but not impact neither rhizomes nor roots. This kind of gear can use only when low-tide around 3-4 hours per day.
How many kilogram they can collect per day? I discoverd in his bucket, it's around 2-3 kilograms of shrimps. I found only 4-5 fishermen use the hand push net in Kep thmei commune.
The coastal livelihood depending on the sea, but I don't know how long they can secure their seafood products. The big change is arriving at this area. The seagrass bed will be changed to a commercial seaport, special tourism zone soon. It's a long-term of the concession, of which 99 years. That means we will not only lose a seafood product and local livelihood, but we will lose both large seagrass ecosystem and area of carbon sequestration for the climate change protection.