Photo credit: Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)
Review: Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website)
Samoa consists of two large islands, Upolu and Savaii, and seven smaller islands with 326 villages; out of which, about 230 of these villages are coastal. There are few freshwater bodies.
Over time, several exotic species have been introduced into Samoa for aquaculture including mussels, oysters, giant clams, carp, tilapia an others.
The two introduced tilapia species are tilapia mossambica (Oreochromis mossambicus) and Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus). However, Nile tilapia has been preferred because of its superior productive traits compared to tilapia mossambica. The culture of Nile tilapia has been established in a number of tilapia farms whereas their seeds have been secured through a tilapia hatchery at Apia.
The stocking of Nile tilapia in natural lakes has been initiated for providing an important source of food for the villagers as well as providing a source of income for some fishermen. Accordingly, Satoalepai Lake on the island of Savaii has been stocked with hatchery-produced Nile tilapia fingerlings whereas the co-management regime has been adopted in this lake stocking program through which consultations with village communities took place as well as identifying the project objectives, activities, and the participation of the villagers and the dissemination of the outcomes of the project.
The inserted photo shows the harvest of tilapia in the Lake Satoalepai, Samoa islands. This lake is situated in the Matautu District on the north east coast of Savaii Island, with around 600 people living within 2 km of the lake.
The lake stocking initiative which is carried out under the responsibility of the Samoa Fishery Division has been supported by some international organizations including the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).