Ms. Marino presenting at Mechesiil Belau Conference.

Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC) was invited to present at the 26th Mechesil Belau Conference on Wednesday, September 18, 2019.

During the annual gathering, the matriarchs of Palau discuss relevant issues covering everything from health, to education, to the environment, and especially, the preservation of Palauan culture.

PICRC researcher, Ms. Lincy Lee Marino, gave an update on the surveys of Napoleon Wrasse (maml) and Bumphead Wrasse (kemedukl) measured at over 100 sites around Palau for the period of 2013 to 2017, as well as 2018. Findings from this survey indicate that, although from 2013 to 2017 fish occurrences increased, the numbers from 2017 to 2018 remained the same, and maml numbers continued to be lower than kemedukl. It is not clear whether or not the population is stable. Ms. Marino also presented about the PICRC tuna tagging project, which is ongoing, to track migration patterns of tuna and marlin in, around, and out of Palau’s waters.

PICRC would like to thank Mechesil Belau for the opportunity to participate in and contribute to the conference, and commend them for their invaluable work across multiple sectors of Palau. (PR)