On March 25, 2020, the BMR-AP Project started to target Meyas as a species to produce and release in Palauan coastal waters to augment or replenish the declining natural populations. Accordingly, a fries releasing activity was drawn up and coordinated between the Bureau of Marine Resources (BMR), the Taiwan AP project and the Ngaremlengui State Government.
Participating in the release activity were personnel from the BMR hatchery, the AP experts, a representative from the Taiwan Embassy, Ngaremlengui traditional leaders Ngirutelchii Emiwo Mad and Renguul ra Mechuang Noel Ngiratmab and state employees Michael Kyota, Adelbai Franz, Radcliff Roberts, and Morei Francisco. Releasing activity was undertaken using the state boat and carried out in two segments that had 2000 two-inched fries released over one underwater lake (or wet in Palauan) and 2000 more released in another, with both wet located in the state’s marine conservation area.
Follow-up research and observation on the fate of the fries will be made with the assistance of the state rangers and the conservationist traditional leaders. As meyas fries only need 7 months to reach broodstock size when cultured in cages, the AP experts estimated the fries released in their natural habitat in the underwater lake, which are located near to the mangrove that is also another habitat environment, could reach marketable size faster because of multiple food sources in nature.
After the fries were released, BMR Director Leon Remengesau said another release will be done again next year to have substantial input that should enable observable result. Meanwhile the Bureau will be providing an underwater camera and computer tablet to the state employees to track the fries adapting to the wet environment. With more high-quality captive-bred fries released under the Ngaremlengui state and traditional leaders’ joint monitoring and protection effort in the conservation areas, the BMR-AP Project is optimistic that it will be possible to add to the natural numbers which has declined in the state’s waters.