What We're Thankful for This Season:  A New Partnership in Indonesia

2021-11-20 10:39 AM By Paul
LINI Divers survey Banggai Cardinalfish in Indonesia.  Photo by LINI.
LINI Divers survey Banggai Cardinalfish in Indonesia. Photo by LINI.

Marine Aquarium Biodiversity and Trade Flow reports that 28% of marine aquarium fishes destined for fish tanks in the U.S.--the largest global market for the marine aquarium trade--originates from Indonesia. This ranks Indonesia as the 2nd most prolific source locale in the world, located in the lush, biodiverse--and threatened--Coral Triangle.

LINI, or the Indonesian Nature Foundation, has committed to building capacity for sustainable small scale fisheries throughout Indonesia over the past decade.  They've introduced best practices in collecting, handling and holding during transportation, facilitating dialogues along the value chain—among fishers, traders, and exporters. In 2015, LINI established a Training Center for marine conservation, which provides hands-on training in aquaculture and reef restoration. In 2016, they supported Indonesia’s Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries to implement a conservation and management plan for the endangered Banggai Cardinalfish (BCF). In 2018, the species was named a protected species under Indonesian National Law.

Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish. Photo by Surya/LINI

The Coral Reef Aquarium Fisheries Campaign began conversations with LINI in 2020 to drive their complementary goals forward in Indonesia.  To this end, the new partners sought for and won an award by the United Kingdom's Darwin Initiative to do just that.  The Darwin Initiative has provided the organizations with a Partnership Grant, a first-stage grant that provides the organization's leaders with some time and resources to develop a comprehensive plan for empowering the sustainable development of Indonesia's marine aquarium fishery. 

The strategy responds to a recent request for study by the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) to inform conservation management of and trade of marine aquarium fishes, and aims to engage the stakeholders of these fisheries, including the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, fishers and traders, to produce a national marine ornamental fisheries strategy.
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