Exploring coral reefs in the Northern Lau Group

By Katy Miller (Vatuvara Foundation)

On 8 May, 2017, a team of made up of fish and coral experts set off to the untouched waters and lush limestone islands of the Northern Lau Group. Vatuvara Private Islands, along with Vatuvara Foundation have partnered with the Wildlife Conservation Society to conduct marine baseline surveys to assess the […]

The Vatu-i-Ra Seascape: Fiji’s wilderness jewel

By Sangeeta Mangubhai
Stretching over 19,400 km2 across the channel that links Fiji’s two main islands of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu is the Vatu-i-Ra Seascape. A seascape is what scientists and conservationists call a marine area that has high biological diversity, is bio geographically intact and is ecologically and genetically connected.
The Vatu-i-Ra Seascape is […]

Promoting better understanding of sea cucumber fisheries and the need for management in Oceania

By Watisoni Lalavanua

Our research team from Fiji and Australia had the opportunity to enlighten university students on fishing activities, stock conditions and socio-economics of artisanal sea cucumber fisheries in Oceania, through a seminar organised by grouper expert Dr. Yvonne Sadovy at the University of Hong Kong.

We wanted to share the results from two papers titled […]

Slugs, slugs and more slugs in the Hong Kong markets

By Watisoni Lalavanua

There were no words to describe my shock at the sheer volumes and diversity of products that end up in the dried seafood markets in the Sheung-Wan district in Hong Kong. Small shops line the market with dried bêche-de-mer products preserved in glass jars with labels that clearly state where the bêche-de-mer comes […]

Promoting better understanding of sea cucumber fisheries and the need for management in Oceania

By Watisoni Lalavanua
Our research team from Fiji and Australia had the opportunity to enlighten university students on fishing activities, stock conditions and socio-economics of artisanal sea cucumber fisheries in Oceania, through a seminar organised by grouper expert Dr. Yvonne Sadovy at the University of Hong Kong.
We wanted to share the results from two papers titled […]

Where have all our sea cucumbers gone?

By Watisoni Lalavanua
Ni hao from Hong Kong!
I am embracing an opportunity of a lifetime to be part of a research team that is following the sale of sea cucumbers along its market chain from fishers to exporters in Fiji, and on to importers, retailers and consumers in Hong Kong.
This is part of a unique collaboration […]

Post cyclone fisheries assessment in Kubulau, Bua Province

By: Watisoni Lalavanua
Over the past two weeks, local scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) have been assessing the impact of cyclone Winston on fisheries in the provinces of Ra and Bua. Last week the team was in Bua with divers from the Namena Dive Resort to assess the state of the reefs in Kubulau’s […]

First dive in Vatu-i-Ra exceeds my expectations!

By Watisoni Lalavanua
In my youth, I frequently heard about Vatu-i-Ra Island and the famous Vatu-i-Ra passage between the islands of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu.
I joined the Wildlife Conservation Society – Fiji Program in January 2016, and this is my first trip with the team into the field to assess the health and condition of […]

How well did Fiji’s coral reefs survive Tropical Cyclone Winston?

After 10 days at sea, travelling over 500km and completing 26 dives, I have solid data on the scale and intensity of damage to the Vatu-i-Ra Seascape, from Tropical Cyclone Winston that passed through Fiji on the 20 February 2016. Coupled with cyclone damage, I assessed coral diversity and coral bleaching patterns throughout the seascape, […]

WCS-Fiji assists displaced communities following Cyclone Winston

A team from the Wildlife Conservation Society Fiji country program has taken food, water, clothes and other essential items to assist the Ra Provincial Council to address the need of the communities that were badly affected following Tropical Cyclone Winston last week. The Cyclone caused havoc in the province of Ra, Lomaiviti and Bua with […]