KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — The recent discovery of large seagrass acreage along the coast of Pulau Talang-Talang Besar near here indicates the success of the Sarawak Forestry Corporation's (SFC) reef ball project to prevent trawlers from encroaching into the waters off the turtle island.
SFC managing director/chief executive officer Datuk Ali Yusop said it would also promote the growth of seagrass found at a depth of between 30 and 40 feet, which was the main diet of the green turtle (Chelonia mydas) and dugong, besides being a habitat for many marine animals.
"Sarawak has long been a model state in environmental protection, with laws and legislative framework established to complement the efforts of the federal government, where several national parks, namely Tanjung Datu, Talang Satang, Similajau and Miri Sibuti, were gazetted for the purpose of marine conservation,” he said.
Ali, who is also Controller of Wildlife, said this today, following SFC's successful reef cleaning and reef ball monitoring exercise, in conjunction with the month-long Malaysia Day celebrations along the coast of the island.
Assisted by 27 volunteer divers from here, including students from Uninversiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas), it is aimed at inculcating awareness on the importance of reef and marine life, as well as to promote constructive partnership between SFC and the general public in the protection and conservation of marine creatures.
This year also saw the volunteers taking part in a gotong-royong to upgrade staff facilities and the turtle hatchery, while the scientific information gathered from the exercise would enable researchers to determine the state of the marine wildlife in Pulau Talang-Talang Besar, as well as provide references on potential threats, said Ali.