The choice (No 25/2019) was issued by H E Dr Fuad bin Jaafar bin Mohammed al Sajwani, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries on February three.
A equivalent choice was issued by the ministry final year (No 2018/69) on March 19, prohibiting fishing, possession and circulation of sea cucumbers for a year.
According to Article 1 of the choice (No 25/2019), fishing of sea cucumbers in all Omani fishing waters is banned from March 27, 2019 for two years. Any sort of handling of the sea cucumber is prohibited, whether or not by sale, obtain, transportation, storage or export in the course of the embargo.
Speaking to Muscat Daily, an official supply in the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries stated, “The temporary ban has been issued for several reasons such as to know the number of sea cucumbers found in the sultanate waters, their fall in numbers and the increasing global demand. They help preserve the marine environment.”
The major species harvested in Oman is the sandfish, Holothuria scabra (feik albahar in neighborhood language which means sea jaw).
According to a study by Khalfan al Rashdi and Michel Claereboudt, more than 21 holothurian species have been not too long ago recorded in the shallow waters of Oman. Of these only Holothuria scabra is exploited commercially and has a worth of about RO1.five per person. The marine species is restricted to the western side of Masirah Island and Mahout Bay which is characterised by huge, shallow seagrass beds with fine sand in sheltered flats and lagoons. The very first official records of the exploitation of Holothuria scabra in Oman was reported about ten years ago.
“Unfortunately, this exploited stock followed the same rapid decline as most exploited population of this sea cucumber elsewhere. Overfishing evidences include a rapid decrease in population density which has been critically reduced to less than one individual per hectare as reported not only in Oman, but in many parts of the world,” reported the researchers.
Information Source: Muscat Daily