The potential of Miossu Island of Papua, a Habitat of Napoleon Fish up to Incredible Coral Reefs

The potential of Miossu Island of Papua, a Habitat of Napoleon Fish up to Incredible Coral Reefs – The results of research from the Nusa Manggala Expedition show that the Miossu Island at Papua contains the potential for biological treasures  such as coral reefs and biota having a high economy. It was said by the coordinator of a research team for Expedition of Nusa Manggala Leg 2, an Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) Research Center for Oceanography (LIPI), I Wayan Eka,  in Jakarta.

In addition, Miossu Island also has a stretching of white and clean sandy beaches with very limpid waters so that the underwater beauty  can be seen. Based on  satellite imagery data of Planet Scope in 2018, the average area of ​​the reefs on Miossu Island is 1,530.7 hectares, consisting of 285.5 hectares of coral habitat zones, 221.8 hectares of seagrass habitat zones, 428.3 hectares of sand cover, and 595,2 hectares are covered with mixed substrate.

This area does not included the potential for deep-sea waters yet in Fisheries Management Area (WPP) 717 (Pacific Ocean). He explained that in 2017, the potential for the  sub-category of fisheries on the island contributed to IDR 4,671 billion. Coral reefs on Miossu Island are generally in good  condition with living coral cover between 30-50 percent  with high coral recruitment and low disease infection.

What is interesting is that at Miossu Island there is a traditional system of the people that is very protective of the natural resources. “We recommend creating a marine conservation area there by involving local people, since they really care about nature,” said Wayan. In addition, more than 200 coral species were found at Miossu Island with the general composition being dominated by the genus of branched Porites, Isopora, Acropora, Pocillopora, Heliopora and Galaxea, as well as soft coral communities.

In the coral reef ecosystem, it is also found a biota having a high economic value, such as clams (Tridacna sp.), Lola snails (Tectus miloticus), and sea cucumbers (Holothuroidea sp). In one location of Miossu Island, clams were found with a density of 680 individuals per hectare.

The results of the CFDI (Coral Fish Diversity Index) analysis (Allen & Werner, 2002) show that the condition of coral reef fish in Miossu Island is in extraordinary conditions. There are more than 330 species of coral reef fish, with a density of 28,000 individuals per hectare which is equivalent to 5,800 kilograms of biomass per hectare. According to the level of rarity, the fish on the island are divided into three categories.

For near threatened categories, namely Blacktip Reef Shark, Chevron butterflyfish, Bluespotted Ribbontail Stingray, Bower’s Parrotfishes, Yellow-tail Parrotfish, Narrow-barred Spanish mackerel, Coral Catshark, Brown-marbled Grouper.

Furthermore, fish are in the vulnerable category, namely Sicklefin Devil Ray, Green Humphead Parrotfish. Meanwhile, there is one type of fish that is endangered, namely the Humphead Wrasse or Napoleon Fish, with an abundance of fish in an average density of 109 individuals per hectare.

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