August 13, 2008
 
Taiwan's Penghu a step closer to aquaculture
 
 

Government authorities in the Taiwanese county of Penghu recently released thousands of newly hatched fry as a prelude to fish farming.

 

The fries were released as part of efforts to boost fish stocks for local fishermen.

 

According to Taipei Times, the release, organized by the Penghu County Government and Keelung's National Ocean University marks the beginning of the county's efforts to shift from open ocean fishing to coastal fishing and eventually to fish farming, Penghu County Agriculture and Fisheries Bureau Director Cheng Ming-yuan said.

 

The county earlier this year suffered from an ocean freeze that saw water temperatures dropping below 9 deg Celcius, decimating wild fish stocks. Taiwan's aquaculture industry lost US$7.6 million during the cold spell in February, with Penghu county alone accounting for more than US$5.8 million. Cobia, a high value species, was most affected.

 

If the county had been involved in fish farming instead of ocean fishing, the losses would have been much more manageable, Cheng told Taipei Times.

 

He declared aquaculture as the way forward as fishing have led to a steep decline in fish stocks.

 

To adjust, authorities in Penghu plan to train fishermen in aquaculture.

 

Penghu county is an archipelago of 90 islands scattered across the Taiwan Strait.

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