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The Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS) once again reminded the public on the importance of Parrot fish, locally and collectively known as “Mol-mol” in the Philippines.
“Parrot fish are essential to the marine and coral ecosystem; [that’s why], responsible consumption is advised,” according to Jovic Fabello, spokesperson of PCSDS in an interview thru a social media platform.
Fabello added that unfortunately, one species of the said fish, the Green Hump-head Parrot fish or Bump-head Parrot fish (Bolbometopon muricatum) is already categorized as “vulnerable” based on PCSD Resolution No.15-521 or the PCSD list of threatened wildlife species in Palawan.
“Isang species lang [ng Parrot fish] ang nasa PCSD list pero kung nasa IUCN list din ‘yong iba, then they need further protection,” Fabello pointed out.
He reiterated that when a category of a certain species is listed in the threatened list just like the category of Green Hump-head Parrot fish means that their population is declining and needs protection and conservation measures.
“Therefore, we discourage utilization of such species until such time that their population would be stable,” PCSDS Spokesperson’s appeal to the public.
He also clarified that even though utilization of other species of parrotfish that are not yet included in the threatened list is still permitted, overfishing should ever be avoided and implement instead responsible fishing techniques in order to protect the remaining population.
Clean Seas Pilipinas, on their social media page shared a similar sentiment and appeals to everyone to stop eating those marine animals in order to maintain a healthy coral ecosystem.
They reiterated that Parrot fish should be protected because they clean the reefs by eating algae and even dead corals, but unfortunately, their numbers are declining as years pass by.
The group also said that Parrot fish poop lots of sand that each fish produces up to 320 kilograms of sand each year.
Meanwhile, Sea-zoned Coron, also a social media page, used the message of a certain Holger W. Horn in stating the same contention.
The group said that Parrot fish, being the algae eating fish “is the most important fish in the sea or coral reefs” and harming them means destruction of corals and threat in marine ecosystem.
“The most important ‘duty’ of the Parrot fish is to clean corals from algae that pose great threat to corals aside from global warming. Coral may die without them,” they stated.
They also noted that the said species of fish spend up to 90 percent of their day nibbling or they clean the reefs and poop out coral sand. That sand eventually transported by tidal and wave movement “to the shorelines to build beaches or make up for lost sand.