PALAU TO OPEN REEFS TO LIMITED TROCHUS HARVEST

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KOROR, Palau (Palau Horizon, Jan. 21) — The Bureau of Marine Resources (BMR) announced that there will be a trochus harvest this year.

In a letter to Minister of Resources and Development Fritz Koshiba, BMR Director Theo Isamu that although there will be a trochus harvest this year, there are factors that need to be considered to continue the sustainability of the trochus population as a commercial commodity. These considerations for management refer to the minimum and maximum size limits of trochus to harvest and the duration of the moratorium," Isamu said.

[PIR editor’s note: Trochus is a large sea snail with a shell used to make mother of pearl buttons, beads and pendants. Research for commercial production of Trochus is currently also being done in the Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Tonga, Samoa, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu.]

He said setting a shortest harvest season and to also set minimum and maximum size requirements then the production yield will be low as expected.

However this way, the stock will be " robust for over fishing in the next harvest after moratorium."

Isamu also told Koshiba that Palau is expected to harvest at least 400 metric tons of trochus because reefs that have been eyed for harvest can yield that amount.

Isamu said he has contacted buyers outside Palau but has yet to get a response.

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