A three-month pilot study of ornamental fish species collected by Walt Smith International Ltd in Fiji was carried out in order to examine the effects of fish collection pressures on the reef populations.

A method and species list for underwater visual survey was purpose-designed and tested.

A comparison was made of: o Sites where fish were routinely collected o Neighbouring sites subject to similar stresses but where fish were not collected o Physically similar sites remote from the collection zone o Physically dissimilar sites remote from the collection zone Fish populations on Collection sites were found to be lower than in Non-collected areas, indicating that collection pressures may be affecting populations of certain species. Improvements to the survey technique to improve statistical significance are recommended. A revised survey technique is suggested by which fish on geographically remote and physically dissimilar reefs across the country could be compared to the family level. A list of 10-15 key species identified as relevant to each area could be used as a reasonable basis for future specific area monitoring. It is recommended that closure of a collection site and subsequent re-surveying be used to determine the amount of recovery time needed for populations of key species to retum to levels found at nearby Non-collected sites. This would be important in the formation of a management plan based on site rotation.

  • Ref ID C0000000074
  • Author Sykes, H., K. Kats, R. Derksen and W. Aalbersberg
  • Year 2002
  • Title Effects of collection on ornamental reef fish populations in Fiji
  • Source Institute of Applied Science,. Suva, Fiji. 59pp.
  • Keywords reef fish, ornamental, aquarium trade, impact assessment, community structure, species diversity, resource assessment,Natural System,People & Livelihoods,Institute of Applied Science
  • Caption A pilot study of Fish Populations in Collection and Non-Collection Areas: September-November, 2002.

Effects of collection on ornamental reef fish populations in Fiji.

Sykes H, Kats K, Derksen R, Aalbersberg B (2003)

IAS Technical Report No. 2003/04. Institute of Applied Sciences, The University of the South Pacific

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