Spiny lobster aquaculture development in eastern Indonesia, Vietnam and Australia

Jones, Clive, Huong, Le Lan, Tuan, Le Anh, Bahrawi, Samsul, and Irvin, Simon (2015) Spiny lobster aquaculture development in eastern Indonesia, Vietnam and Australia. Report. Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), Canberra, ACT, Australia.

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[Extract] The project was successful across all objectives, making demonstrable progress in support of establishing tropical lobster farming in Indonesia. The industry remains most active in Lombok where lobster seed resources are most abundant, and impact has been greatest there. Nevertheless, project activities have established activity and interest in lobster farming in other provinces and particularly Aceh and, South and Southeast Sulawesi. The project met all of its 23 milestones withthe exception of publishing a production manual, which has been held over until 2017. For several milestone activities, further research will be required to build on the outcomes generated and reach practical commercial outputs. The research was instigated to address the opportunity to establish a significant small-holder based industry in Indonesia that could alleviate poverty in coastal communities. The premise was that such an industry –lobster farming, had been established in Vietnam, with ACIAR involvement, and it could be replicated in Indonesia where the availability of necessary basic requirements had been confirmed through a previous ACIAR project focussed in Vietnam (FIS/2001/058). The broad aim was to assess, develop and expand the resources of naturally settling lobster seed (puerulus), and develop grow out of those seed to meet export market demand. This was to be achieved by adapting and transferring to Indonesia technology from Vietnam, where lobster farming had become a successful industry producing 1,500 tonnes of export quality lobsters valued at $A100 million. Project activities were primarily Indonesia based, with a modest commitment of resources to Vietnam and Australia. The Vietnam lobster farming industry had reached a level of some stability, but was clearly in need of improved sustainability. Research there was focused on sustainability issues, which would have important impact in Vietnam with flow-on benefit to Indonesia to avoid the pitfalls experienced. In Australia, project activities were directed to assessing the potential to establish lobster grow out in this country to maximise benefit from expected hatchery supply of seed. Lobster grow out was seen as a potential diversification for existing aquaculture operators and for Indigenous communities. In Indonesia, the lobster seed resources in Lombok were closely examined and defined in regard to spatial and seasonal distribution, species composition, market price and fishing methods. From 2008 to 2012, catch was consistent with stable fishing effort, at around 600,000 seeds per year. In 2013, catch per month increased with improved techniques and increasing effort (more fishers) and had reached an annual total of over 5 million seeds by mid 2014. Around 75% of the seed captured were Panulirus homarus, the sand lobster, and the remaining 25% primarily Panulirus ornatus, the pearl or ornate lobster. At the beginning of the project, seed price was around IDR2,000 each ($A0.20), and by June 2014 was exceeding IDR18,000 each ($1.80). Thus, value of the seed resource had increased from $A120,000 to $A9 million. The most significant influence on this increase was a study tour arranged through the project that took a group of 10 Indonesians to Vietnam to learn first hand the techniques of lobster seed fishing and grow out. Abundant seed resources were also identified in Aceh and Southeast Sulawesi. In contrast to the increased seed catch from 2008 to 2014, lobster grow out in Indonesia decreased as grow out farmers focussed their attention on seed fishing only. As seed catch grew in Lombok, demand from export markets (primarily Vietnam) also grew, with concomitant increase in price. The seed were destined for markets where lobster grow out was well established and the Indonesian seed were of good quality and significantly lower price than locally sourced seed (seed price in Vietnam was over $5.00 for P. homarusand more than $A12.00 for P. ornatus). Lombok fisher/farmers who had been less effective at grow out than those of Vietnam, as their knowledge and capacity were only developing, chose to avoid the risk of grow out and cash-in on sale of seed. This unexpected consequence of the increased seedcatch is unfortunate, as it precludes the Indonesians gaining the most value from their lobster resources. In parallel to the research activities assessing and expanding seed catch, were activities to improve the survival and growth rate of lobsters from point of capture through nursing and to grow out to market size. This comprised knowledge gains in lobster nutrition, husbandry and health management. Although significant gains in knowledge of these disciplines had been made in Vietnam through FIS/2001/058, they had focussed on P. ornatus, the most common species in Vietnam, while in Indonesia, the focus was on P. homarus, which exhibited differences in its requirements. Much of the Indonesian research was performed by the Marine Aquaculture Development Centre in Lombok, and over the course of the project, the capacity of the centre and the staff was significantly increased for experiment-based research of lobster aquaculture. This flowed on to improved technology extension, as the MADC staff, who have a strong extension responsibility, were better equipped to advise farmers. The primary impact has been the improved livelihoods of village communities throughout southeast Lombok. At the outset of the project some 3 villages and around 200 households were involved in lobster farming activities (catching of seed and grow out). By project’s end, there were 2,000 households involved directly including men, women and children. Economic impact included increased family incomes and improved community infrastructure. Social impact included engagement of several family members –particularly women and older children, an expansion beyond just men who had been the initial participants.While the project achieved a substantial positive impact in assisting the establishment of lobster farming in Indonesia, more research and development is required to realise the full potential. The unexpected decrease in lobster grow out can and must be reversed, to enable the full benefit of the Indonesian lobster seed resources to be gained. This will require definitive lobster production technology appropriate to the lobster species available and to the smallholders who will be involved. To this end, a new ACIAR project (FIS/2014/059) has been approved. Core activities will include theadaptation of existing nutrition information to an effective commercial pellet diet, available and attractive to Indonesian lobster farmers. Improvements in survival of lobster seed, particularly during the catching / transport phase and subsequent nursery phase are required. These improvements will come from improved nutrition, husbandry and health management.Most importantly the technologies generated by the research must be effectively extended to the farmers, and achieving that will necessitate a strong focus on socio-economic factors. It is now clear from the research completed that development of lobster farming in Indonesia should have a broader approach to harness existing aquaculture capacity beyond Lombok, Aceh and southern Sulawesi, to stimulatediversification by existing farmers and attract greater investment to the industry.

Item ID: 41325
Item Type: Report (Report)
ISBN: 978 1 925133 98 1
Keywords: lobster, aquaculture, Indonesia, Panulirus
Funders: Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research
Projects and Grants: ACIAR SMAR/2008/021
Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2016 05:02
FoR Codes: 07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070401 Aquaculture @ 100%
SEO Codes: 83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8301 Fisheries - Aquaculture > 830106 Aquaculture Rock Lobster @ 100%
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