25 Oct 2011

Calls for fewer fishing nets in Aitukaki lagoon in Cook Islands

12:18 pm on 25 October 2011

The mayor of the island of Aitutaki in the Cook Islands is calling for the number of fishing nets in the lagoon to be reduced by 75 percent in order to conserve fish resources, in particular bonefish.

John Baxter says the idea will be raised in council meetings this month and then taken into the villages where people can have their say.

Mr Baxter suggests residents use fewer nets and consider alternative fishing techniques like spear and line fishing.

"They can catch it with a line and a hook. Let's conserve what we have got in our lagoon. We're trying to stop people who net the fish for sale - let's just keep it for families instead of just netting them by the hundreds."

Mr Baxter says it is time to think about future generations because fish stocks are going to become increasingly scarce if nothing is done to conserve them.