Fishermen defy order to get rid of fish traps

Fishermen in Songkhla’s Singha Nakorn district have defied the government’s order to remove their stake fish traps, surrounding nets and other illegal fishing gears and instead threatened to block the Songkhla lake.

Meanwhile in Nakhon Si Thammarat, small-scale fishermen continue to use their illegal fishing gears to catch fish in the sea and have refused to get rid of them.

According to the Fisheries Department, there are over 1,500 stake fish traps or pongpang and over 27,000 small fish traps or sai in Songkhla lake. Since 1978, the department has stopped issuing licences for stake fish traps and it can be assumed that most of the stake fish traps in the lake are illegal.

Violators who refuse to remove the illegal fishing gears will be liable to five years imprisonment and/ or a fine of between 100,000-500,000 baht.

It was reported that the committee tasked with solving illegal fishing problem may extend the deadline for the removal of the illegal fishing gears to early October.