Cook Islands Fresh Water Eels Protected By Traditional ‘Raui’

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Government supports local leaders conservation efforts

RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (Cook Islands News, Oct. 6, 2014) – Mitiaro’s well-known fresh water eels the ‘Itiki’ is now back in the hands of the Ui Ariki and the Aronga Mana of the island.

With the guidance of the Island Government and under the watchful eyes of law enforcement officers on the island – a short term ‘raui’ was imposed by island leaders with full support by the community.

The traditional raui conservation practise of banning the taking of the itiki began on Wednesday with the view to have the itiki population numbers up for a number of special events on the island in 2016.

The island is preserving its local delicacy to accommodate these events.

With the raui now in place, terms and conditions will be highly monitored by enforcement officers to discipline those who violate the raui.

This is also a notice to all Mitiaro communities and visitors from outside of Mitiaro to please accept and respect the raui.

The first Sunday of April every year is thanks giving day on the island, which will also mark the last day of the raui in 2016 with the official lifting of the raui.

The island has already decided and is looking forward to receiving first the CICC National Youth Convention early in 2016 and also the Manea Games later in the year.

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