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Jakarta Post

Fishermen strike a balance with coral reefs

  • The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, April 28 2010   /  11:13 am

Nothing in nature goes unreciprocated.Just ask the coral farmers of Panggang islet, Thousand Islands Regency, who earn a living from harvesting the coral reefs that stretch across the island’s 700 hectares of waterfront and in turn nurture the revival of that delicate ecosystem that once was on the verge of destruction due to illegal fishing activities.“In 2004, the government banned the harvesting of naturally occurring coral and reinforced bans on the use of explosives and cyanide in fishing,” said Ilham, 29, a resident coral farmer of the islet.“Since then, I have noticed that the corals have gotten healthier and have multiplied.”Ilham started farming naturally occurring coral in 2001, but in 2004, following the ban, he switched to farming transplanted coral, a move he found difficult at first, but was empowered by training from the local administration, the national marine ...