TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - A West Sumatra University fisheries and mainland fisheries academic announced that a number of fish species endemic to Indonesia are swimming to the verge of extinction due to environmental pollution.
“These fishes do not exist other than in Indonesia,” said the academic, Muhammad Nur, in a symposium in Jambi yesterday. “The species in the verge of extinction include the freshwater julung-julung, pirik, and the Sulawesi rainbow fish.”
Among many causes of their close extinction, he says, are anthropogenic factors, fishing devices that are not environmentally-friendly, and overfishing of freshwater fish species.
He also said gold-mining activities and mining raw materials from rivers are contributing to the destruction of the fish habitats, and the introduction of invasive foreign fish species in the habitat of the endemic species.
“There needs to be an entity monitoring the preservation of our endemic fishes,” said Muhammad Nur.
His concerns announced in the symposium were backed by Prof. Fajar Raharjo who said the government’s current focus to mainland fisheries is still relatively insignificant.