12 Jun 2015

Large reef damaged by FAD in American Samoa

7:52 pm on 12 June 2015

About 120 square feet of coral in American Samoa has been destroyed after a floating fish aggregation device became stuck to a reef.

The Department of Marine And Wildlife Resources and staff from the Coral Reef Advisory Group extracted a floating FAD that was found on the reef in Fagaalu.

The Department's fish biologist Alice Lawrence says the FAD became attached to very fine and fragile branching coral.

"When we actually removed it, there's quite a large area of dead coral underneath, we estimate around 120 square feet. The surrounding area was also damaged by little pieces of rope and material. This is kind of a problem especially in Fagaalu, where the reef is actually quite healthy. There's a lot of fish, and people go fishing there, it's damaged quite a big area. There's less habita there for the fish and other marine creatures."

Alice Lawrence says even out at sea FADS can be a threat to marine life.