Fighting Crown of Thorns is everybody’s business: Kennedy

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Deposing of the dead COTS about 617 collected in total over 5 hours on Saturday at Jari Conservation Island.
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BY ALFRED PAGEPITU

GIZO

Deposing of the dead COTS about 617 collected in total over 5 hours on Saturday at Jari Conservation Island.

THE man behind the current campaign against the invasive Crown of Thorns (COT) in the Western province is calling for everyone to participate.

Gizo Dive shop owner Danny Kennedy says, “Eradicating the spreading of Crown of Thorns in our country and provinces needs the cooperative effort of all citizens to contain the spread of these sea creatures.

“We cannot control the spread of the COT by our own but we need everyone must work alongside NGOs and tourism business partners to control the spreading of these dangerous starfish.

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“We had a beautiful and successful day at Njari on Saturday. But I have to say, the local community at west Gizo- Saeraghi, is nothing short of pathetic, downright lazy and couldn’t give stuffs about the local clusters of reefs in front of the village.

“They sit around and talk about the effects of Climate change and conservation but they do nothing about it.

“On Monday preceding the COT day, I went out and visited the Chairman of the West Coast Conservation management committee. We had an audience of about 20 people during the open discussions. I explained, start with their dugouts from the village and work all the reefs out to Njari. I offered $1SBD for every COT collected, anywhere in the region of their village extending out west to Njari, Varu and Njingono.”

“We had a total of 12 collectors and extracted 617 COT from the adjacent reefs. On a sadder note, several of our staff reported that some areas east of Varu were totally dead due to the destruction from the COT.

“There is still a lot of work to do, and we are already planning our next day out in a couple of weeks. We would like to think and hope that the Ministry of Environment and other responsible Ministries, Government and authorities to look very serious over the spreading of COT.”

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