The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our community partners in Les, North Bali, and Banggai island, Sulawesi

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our community partners in Les, North Bali, and Banggai island, Sulawesi

It has been three months since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world, also reaching remote communities in the areas where we work. It has affected our community partners in different ways. Since late March 2020, the marine aquarium fishers in Les village have had less orders, and therefore significantly less income, and there have been almost no international flights coming out of Bali, so no cargo has been shipped anywhere. The fishers are starting to face a hard life, and they are struggling to put food on the table for their families. Working at the Aquaculture Centre with us has helped them a little bit, and friends of LINI have supported the fishers’ families by providing rice, cooking oil, and eggs for them, and milk for the younger children. 

Despite all the uncertainty, we still continue with all aspects of our fieldwork that do not require us to attend or organize any gatherings. We try to practice physical distancing, wearing masks, and maintain a high level of hygiene at the Centre.

The monitoring of the restored reefs has still been conducted every month. During our monitoring this May, we encountered coral bleaching at depths of 5 meters to 20 meters, and bleaching has also been reported on neigbouring reefs along the North coast of Bali.    

Our community partner Yayasan KALI in Banggai, and the fisherfolks in Banggai, continue to restore the habitat of the Banggai cardinalfish (BCF), and regularly conduct monitoring of the BCF populations in Bone Baru. They celebrated Earth Day with the planting of mangrove seedlings, which will increase the area for fish to breed in and protect the coastline from erosion.  While the Bone Baru villagers continue with their conservation work, the Octopus fishers of Popisi village in North Banggai have not been so lucky, as their Octopus fishing activities have stopped almost completely. The Octopus fishers must try and find alternative jobs, such as labours and construction workers, at a time when so very many other poor people are out of work.

We will continue to support these communities as best we can but hope that anyone wanting to give donations to help them will do so. All donations will go directly to the villagers who are working with us on the community- based conservation projects. Thank you again for your interest and support! 

Gearing up to expand our internship program in 2020

Gearing up to expand our internship program in 2020

We started our internship program in 2016, with our aquaculture of marine reef fish and reef restoration in the LINI Aquaculture and Training Centre (LATC), at Les village in North Bali. The program is dedicated to offering Indonesian fresh graduates from fisheries, marine science, aquaculture backgrounds the chance to experience working on a wide range of fisheries and marine conservation issues. Interns will stay at the Centre for at least three months, although many of them extend their internships.

To date there have been 22 interns who graduated from the LINI internship program, with work experience covering captive breeding of the Banggai Cardinalfish, clownfish, preparing green-water and rotifer plankton cultures, building artificial structures for reef restoration, and monitoring the mortality and recruitment of corals on the structures. 

Recently, we expanded our internship program to include our organic garden and education. Amel graduated from Gajah Mada University, Yogyakarta, and Ade from Udayana University, Bali, during the period of September – December 2019, and they both took part in this new program. Amel learned about organic gardening, and Ade helped in educational outreach in the local schools at Les village.

The aim of expanding the program is to explore a wider range of activities for interns in the Centre, and also to help the local community. In 2020, we plan to offer the internship program not only in our Centre in North Bali but also at our field project site in Banggai Island, Central Sulawesi and in Banda Islands in Maluku. Stay tuned for the next news from LINI. We wish you all a happy prosperous new year! 

Amel (left) and Ade (right) helping each other to make the Centre green (photo: Nyka)
Ade and Amel attaching some information posters (photo: Nyka)

Aquaculture Research in the LATC

Aquaculture Research in the LATC

At the beginning of this year, we planned to make some improvements in our aquaculture facility. One of these was to enhance the nutritional intake of the fish, to encourage optimal health of the marine species for our breeding program. Marine Aquarium fish are valued and admired based on their colours and patterns and improved health helps to make fish look more beautiful. We aim to have a breeding program with broodstocks that produce an optimal number of viable eggs and healthy offsprings. Currently, our cultured clownfish have a “bleache” light pale orange colour, which makes them less attractive than their wild-caught counterparts. In addition, many broodstocks have a low frequency in the numbers of eggs laid, or the eggs turn out to be unviable and dod not hatch. These problems may be caused by a lack of essential nutritents, (such as phosphate and vitamins) in the feed we give to our clownfish. In early August, we started trials, where we varied the different kinds of feed given to the baby clownfish. Our intern, Wayan helped us by testing the effect of giving enriched Artemia shrimps (given additional food and supplements) on the growth rates of the young clownfish, and the sharpness and brightness of their colours and patterns. He designed a mini research project to enrich the shrimp (Artemia) with Spirulina, cod oil and a combination of Spirulina – cod oil. The objective of the experiment was to identify which enriched diet produced the growth rates and colouration. In aquaculture industry, the food can cost up to 60% of operational budget, therefore, the effectiveness of the feed in producing healthy organisms is central to the success of the business, both in terms of finance and quality products.

Wayan helping in the aquarium making process (left) and Wayan working on the feed trials (photos: Made Partiana)

We would like to continue the research, which aims to discover the most effective combination of nutrients that produce the best enrichment of Artemia shrimp for feeding to the baby fish. We would like to encourage Indonesian students who are interested in taking part in this research for their thesis in their final year at University. Would anyone who would like to join in this work please send an email to info@lini.or.id we will then provide further details regarding the research schedule and requirements. 

Internships and volunteers at LINI Aquaculture and Training Centre

Internships and volunteers at LINI Aquaculture and Training Centre

We have been very busy in the last six months, hosting many interns and volunteers. Three fresh graduate University students, Nyka from Jogjakarta, Hani from Purwokerto, (both in Central Java). and Vany from Padang (West Sumatra) spent three months, from June to August, conducting internships at our Centre. Currently, we have Anthony from Jakarta, Stephanie from Bandung and Dewi from Bali.

The Indonesian interns helped with our marine and environment education program for local schools, also with breeding ornamental shrimps and clownfish.  The purpose of the internships was for the interns to gain work experience, and also to learn about various aspects of our community development program, which is one of the main focus programs of our Centre.

In July the Centre hosted three Australian volunteers from the Universities of Murdoch and Western Australia. And this month, until 23 December, we are hosting two volunteers, both from Murdoch University. In addition, there were four students from the University of Cendana, Kupang, Timor. The interns and volunteers are working with the nine women workers who come from Les village, and who work at the Centre. This has been a wonderful opportunity for all of them to interact and learn about each other’s lives, as they all came from very different backgrounds.

One activity which was initiated by Nyka and Karis, an intern from Murdoch University, was the painting of a mural with an underwater theme on the walls of the Centre. The activity created an opportunity for a wonderful collaboration, and the beautiful mural has been used as one of the awareness materials at the Centre, where people come to learn about marine life.

                               

A One-Month Training Programme with Two Students from Cochin University, India

A One-Month Training Programme with Two Students from Cochin University, India

Sariga and Anju, two Students from Cochin University, Kerala, India,  took part in a  one-month training program from 14th May until 14th June, at the LINI LATC, desa Les, North Bali. This training programme aimed to teach them on-site about marine ornamental fish aquaculture, coral reef restoration, and fish identification techniques.

 

The LINI LATC programme is responding directly to the need to reduce the destruction of Indonesia’s globally important coral reefs. Through this training programme, the students were given an opportunity for work experience in various aspects of marine conservation, reef restoration, aquaculture, and sustainable fishery management.

 

 “LINI was a practical experience for me in marine ornamental fisheries. I was also able to acquire a greater in-depth knowledge about LINI and its activities. The role played by LINI in helping the livelihoods of fishermen in les village is highly admirable” Said Sariga.

 

“This one-month training programme helped me to learn about the possibilities of non-destructive fishing practices in the ornamental fish trade, various marine fisheries conservation activities, community empowerment, marine aquaculture, and the need for sustainable trade practices. I can recommend this program for all research scholars working in the field of fisheries management. This programme will greatly enable you to change your outlook towards the ornamental fish industry and also help you to develop various skills that will help to focus your future research”  said Anju.