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Fiji Time: 7:34 PM on Wednesday 17 September

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Best spawning site

Luke Rawalai
Saturday, July 05, 2014

THE country's only Protected Fish Spawning Aggregation Site lies at the Naiqoro Passage near Kadavu.

Ministry of Fisheries principal officer Aisake Batibasaga said the site was one of the best in Fiji and the whole Western Central Pacific region ranking well with intensely protected reefs and dive sites such as in Palau and Hawaii.

Mr Batibasaga said the coral health and cover at Naiqoro was still very healthy compared to the other sites across the whole Kadavu archipelago.

"This is largely because Naiqoro Passage is a reef passage with very substantial current fluxes and high water and nutrient exchange rate from deeper, cooler, and nutrient laden water," he said.

"This arises from up welling action in the continental shelves or island underwater bathymetric crustal ridges here. As a rule of thumb (like the law of gravity), the reef passages would always have high diversity or better coral health and coverage/biomass compared to shallower reef areas."

Mr Batibasaga said Naiqoro Passage was a protected area, thus there had been no fishing allowed since 2003.

He added the KYMST was co-ordinated by the Fisheries officers at Vunisea, and the members are the principal administrator, roko tui Kadavu and all government departments there.