[Coral-List] Mass Fish Deaths in Nauru & Kiribati
sulu_r at usp.ac.fj
sulu_r at usp.ac.fj
Sun Dec 7 18:24:42 EST 2003
Dear Coral listers,
We have had mass fish deaths in Kiribati (around Tarawa) at around October and
then another mass fish death with a much higher proportion in Nauru in Late October
up to now (December - sporadically). The fish death occur from the the surface
down to depths of 180 feet. The fish were observed to be initially weak and then
slowly die. One can swim in the coral reef areas and the fish just literally stick to you
and come right into your masks as they were too weak to swim away. They would
literally be just biting you. With the fish around you, it is like swimming around
leaves. Right now it has kind of reduced but we have observed that the living fish
swimming around have some sores around the eyes. We assume that this may
have been due to parasites from the mass fish death getting on to the living fish.
There has also been evidence of coral bleaching.
There was a lot of Tuna schools around the area and they were not suffering any bit,
but preety much healthy. There was no Tuna death. There was quite a lot of silver
tail trevally which kind of has a population explosion with a lot of young around and
increasing in size with every passing weeks.
I rememeber that some months ago, one of our subscribers wrote in about mass
parrot fish deaths. We have been doing a lot of soul searching about this
phenomenon and the possibilities we come up included increased temperature
levels, red tides etc. Does anyone experience this anywhere in other parts of the
world and what has been the conclusion you come up with. We have photographs
available and if anyone is interested to see them please contact me.
With many thanks
Reuben John Sulu
Institute of Marine Resources
The University of the South Pacific
PO Box 1168, Suva. Fiji Islands
Phone (679) 3212997 Fax (679) 3309494
More information about the Coral-List