The empty sea


DEB News


Let's meet Benny Chan



Diversity at a glance


"In the News"

Book Review

Wild Corner

Recent Publications

Information for Contributors


An endemic enigma: the secret identity of Hong Kong's black paradise fish
New reef fish from High Island dam dollos
The humphead wrasse: a threatened species
Reproductive biology of Halichoeres nigrescens, the bubblefin wrasse
What is SCRFA?
Starling Inlet - tomorrow's empty wetland?
The 2002 Woodland Breeding Bird Survey - result highlights
Nesting population of egrets and herons in 2002-preliminary results
Is the Yellow-throated Marten in Hong Kong?
More tiger talk

What is SCRFA?

by Yvonne Sadovy

Many species of fish aggregate to spawn. Since these spawning aggregations are likely the only opportunity for such species to reproduce, and can be highly predictable in time and space, they are typically easy to find and readily overexploited. Experience in the Pacific, and elsewhere, including Hong Kong (see Chinese bahaba in Porcupine !24), shows that heavily fished aggregations rapidly decline, with serious consequences for the future of fish populations that depend on them. SCRFA stands for the Society for the Conservation of Reef Fish Aggregations and was founded in 2000, following a mini-symposium on reef fish spawning aggregations, in response to biologistsí concerns over the increased commercial targeting of reef fish spawning aggregations. While these are well able to sustain subsistence fishing levels, they clearly do not withstand the heavier levels associated with larger scale commercial fisheries, such as some of the tourist markets for chilled fish in the Caribbean and export markets in the Indo-Pacific like the luxury trade in live reef fish. The heavy fishing of spawning aggregations is considered to be a significant threat to the sustainable use of reef resources. SCRFA has received funding from the Packard Foundation to generate a database, carry out research, and produce educational materials on spawning aggregations as a basis for improving their management and conservation.


For more information, contact

Copyright © 2000