Protect Marine Fauna of Mauritius

Discussion in 'Environmental' started by mauritius-aqua, Mar 13, 2010.

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  1. mauritius-aqua

    mauritius-aqua Astrea Snail

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    Hello all fellow Marine world passionate, I've been here for a while, and I thought it would be right to discuss and share a very worrying issue concerning the marine environment of the Paradise Island. I had a discussion with Marcel ( the first person to breed albino clown fish and some friends before, and now I think its right time to make the light on it:

    Here is the story summed up by a true marine conservationist, who've felt the importance of protecting our "mother" sea from selfish human beings[​IMG]

    "In April 2009, the Fisheries Division of the Ministry of Agro Industry, Food Production and Security issued an exceptional letter of authorisation to Marine Culture of Mascarene Ltd (MCML). It states that the company is authorised to: …collect up to 4000 units of live marine ornamental fish per month, to constitute a brood stock and the surplus to be exported.”
    Annexes to the letter specify the conditions of the authorisation, including geographical limitations and a list of ornamental fish and invertebrates that were suggested for breeding. The fish include several species of clown fish (cousins of the main character in the Disney movie “Finding Nemo”) and the invertebrates comprise various species of soft coral.
    For background, we talked to ornamental fish collectors with decades of experience in Mauritius. They explained that their methods were highly sustainable since they removed only a small fraction of juvenile fish from the wild, while protecting adults of breeding age. These fish were caught on demand in response to requests wholesalers around the world and their quota from Fisheries Division was around 5000 fish per annum. They were dismayed that MCML had permission to extract nearly ten times this number. At that rate the fish stocks in the area defined would be on the brink of collapse within a few years as the collectors would have to remove virtually every fish they encountered to reach the quota.
    They further explained that it is not commercially viable to breed the fish suggested by Fisheries Division in Mauritius. Many of the species are relatively easy to breed and this is already conducted in countries which constitute the main markets for ornamental marine fish, thus eliminating the need for expensive long haul air freighting of the fish. Further investigation revealed that Werner Menzel, the main shareholder in MCML, is one of the major distributors of ornamental fish in Europe but has virtually no experience or operations in breeding them.
    Given that one mating pair of fish can produce thousands of spawn, it is inconceivable why a quota of nearly 50,000 wild fish per year would be required to build up a breed stock. Perhaps the clue is in the short phrase “and the surplus to be exported”. Our suspicions were confirmed when we questioned people who had visited MCML’s operation site. They stated that the facilities consisted of short term holding tanks that were totally inappropriate for breeding.
    We learned that Werner Menzel was assisted by Parmeet Ramtohul, a relative of Dr Arvin Boolell (ex-Minister of Agro Industry, Food Production and Security), and whose wife was apparently given a 45% share in MCML. According to Mr Ramtohul, the exceptional letter of authorisation was obtained with the help of Mrs Ratacharan of Fisheries Division. She had been promised all-expenses paid holidays and in return she had written half of the MCML’s proposal to ensure its application was approved by the appropriate committee.
    When we spoke to Mrs Ratacharan, she refused to answer our enquiries and instead referred us to the Director. We send him a fax detailing our questions about the authorisation and he advised us that he had instructed Mrs Ratacharan to answer them. To date she has not refused to take our calls or return them.
    We have discovered a conversation on a bulletin board for ornamental fish dealers. In it, Mr Ramtohul declared that he was looking for partners to help him catch and export fish from Mauritius, including the highly sought-after Gem Tangs, which retail at over $3000 and the Debelius which retails easily twice the price of Gem tangs. these was not included on the list of species suggested for breeding.
    Mr Menzel is currently out of the country. However, we understand that the operations of MCML are continuing under the supervision of the German Consul in Mauritius, Mr Rainer Goetse.
    From our investigations, we conclude that is highly likely that Mr Menzel and Mr Ramtohul set up a front business pretending that they would breed certain fish. However, their real intention was to catch and export much more valuable wild fish from Mauritian waters. The question remains: which officials knew about this and are complicit in its implementation? "


    Please ur views, comments and solution will be the most welcome. Help us protect the Environment!


     
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  3. UWWorld_NJ

    UWWorld_NJ 3reef Sponsor

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    WOW good post Sagar. this is horrible. Some people just want to exploit and take advantage of the ocean waters and the animals that live there. they would possibly maybe made some fish scarce and eventually even harder to get. Good they are stopped.
     
  4. Matt Rogers

    Matt Rogers Kingfish Staff Member

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    This is very troublesome.

    I want to hear more about this as it develops. Subscribing now...
     
  5. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    What a terrible develop. Hopefully the rest of the world can bring to bear their collective weight and stop this dastardly enterprise.
     
  6. slocal

    slocal Torch Coral

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    Oh man, 50k fish per year would devastate any delicate ecosystem. Shame on the Republic of Mauritius and shame on all involved.

    I would advise posting the facts of this situation on Wikipedia to further the reach of this issue.
     
  7. mauritius-aqua

    mauritius-aqua Astrea Snail

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    thanks very much for the support till now. I'll certainly keep u people updated. thats certainly a shame..big shame, am not racist, but they are helping a stranger rather than backing the Mauritian companies. Mauritius is too small for 50,000 fish per year. To hell the people in the fisheries authorities, Honestly I wonder how much money must have been distributed. The Mauritian who has been done, has himself certify that the German is not going to do any breeding at all. and he's being helped by some other Mauritian idiots, just for the greed of 'money', regardless of wat will be happening to the environment!
    stay tune!!!
     
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  9. doog

    doog Peppermint Shrimp

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    never heard of mauritius, but just did some reading and i'm booking tickets now!
    glad to hear you're speaking up about important issue - hope you get some traction locally.

    slocal is right about wikipedia - you might be able to tack onto the mauritius entry and add a section titled "environmental irresponsibility"

    btw, people DO pay 3500 for a fish!?! man oh man, i need to learn to breed gem tangs!
     
  10. mauritius-aqua

    mauritius-aqua Astrea Snail

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    If u need Gem tang u can see with Jason
    Thats very sad, the worst of it, many people of the authorities knew that the German guy is not doing anything about breeding, yet they are closing their eye. Breeding Gem tang, till now don't know any1, but in 3-4 years time there will be one guy, His fixed his goal on mating and breeding the Famous Gem tangs!!::)

    With the stock capacity the German have set up . all the smaller companies of mauritius will be of no match!
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
  11. third_eye

    third_eye Plankton

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    facts

    Hi there , I understand the German Menzel anyways will be collecting wild fish to export without any breeding.
    This guy should be declared pesona non grata in Mauriitus.
    The depth of the problem is worst in Mauritius, the Menzel case in only the top of the iceberg.
    Since years Fish collectors are doing whatever they want, I read the article who says Fish collection in sustainable manner. Is it the case ? Fish are collected in drastic ways, dozens of species dies in the process of collection and fishes after collection are mostly stocked in plastic containers, Mauritian people us as dustbin.
    They operate freely without any control from Fisheries officers, if ever there are, most of them collaborate together and norms/laws are not respected.
    The government of Mauritius has also delivered , among with Menzel, few other licences out of the blue, political pressures ??
    The article refers to collectors, who would of course defend their territory, but what about Dive centers, scientists, photographers and amateur divers ? They all state that our lagoon is depleting and Fish collection destorys corals and habitats ( imagine how do they catch a fish who is hidden in coral caves, well they just break the whole thing to capture the poor creatures.
    Fish stock exported is not even controlled, I wonder how the existing ones even get EU certifications given conditions they are stocked.
    Furthermore, species in the bag are not even controlled, so how can authorities count number of fish being exported by each collectors, given than there are 3 or 4 collectors and in all Fisheries quota is only five thousand.
    Shipments are prepared at the collectors, and Veterinary papers and health certificates are issued and collected at Port Louis, without even any controls.
    Collectors can ship any species they want, as even at custom there are no checks, for custom, it is only a matter of fish colours given Fisheries division delivers health certificates.
    Collectors do not respect Quotas given to them. If you have a Quota to catch 100 fish per year in Mauritius, you can export 500 per week, and write 10 fishes in the health/export licence.

    The problem is not about sustainable or unsustainable collection, the problem is about collection, whether one unit or one million, problem is the same.

    Wild fish collection should be completely banned in Mauritius, whether IN or OFF lagoon.
     
  12. mauritius-aqua

    mauritius-aqua Astrea Snail

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    U've said all this, are u aware of the people who are collecting fish???
    Do u have any proof that the collectors who have been collecting fish for years, are breaking corals during collection???? Do u have any knowledge of collecting fish???? Do u have any knowledge about fish keeping???

    Wat will the actual collector do if fish collection is completely banned???
    Are u ready to offer them a reasonable job?????

    As far As I know there was only one company who were putting fish in plastic dustbin tank run by oxygen pump, and he too have been fu*ked and eradicated. U r taking that piece of **** and generalizing thing, that all collectors in Mauritius are breaking corals and do not have any stock for their fish??? Please send proof for this, that will be very interesting!

    IF that interest u, come and meet me, and explain me head to head wat u've got to tell.

    Send me proofs!!!!!!!!!:juggle2:

    U are are accusing these collectors, let me see wat evidence u've got of unsustainable collection. let me see why fish collection should be banned for all in Mauritius!! wat have u done to help protect the Mauritian sea . that will be very interesting to see wat u've got to propose.