World Oceans Day ICS team conducts fish identification training with Hilton staff on Silhouette |21 June 2021
The Indian Ocean, the third largest ocean in the world, is well known for its rich marine biodiversity. The 115 granitic and coralline islands of the Seychelles, an archipelago of the Western Indian Ocean, is home to numerous vibrant and unique marine life.
The coastal reefs of Silhouette island, the third largest island in the Seychelles, 20km northwest of Mahé, is the abode of enthralling species that are pivotal as indicators in the ecosystem of a healthy reef. Breath-taking panoramas of Butterfly fish (Papiyon), Angelfish (Sirizyen), Triggerfish (Bours), Parrotfish (Kakatwa), Rabbitfish (Kordonnyen) canvas the shades of blue surrounding Silhouette island. Invertebrates such as octopuses and nudibranchs peep out from the nooks and crannies of the reefs, adding even more mystery to the palette.
More than often, a mesmerized tourist would ask the staff the names of the different species they meet during their underwater excursions.
For World Ocean Day, on June 8, the ICS (Island Conservation Society) team seized the opportunity to conduct a fish identification training activity with staff of the dive centre at Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort and Spa. The activity to commemorate the United Nations event was after a week of theoretical training to identify the different species. The aim was that the three Hilton Seychelles Labriz staff would succeed in identifying the species on paper before they effectively pointed them out at a chosen Silhouette dive site. The event proved to be a success and was a wonderful way to commemorate the theme of the day ‘Life and Livelihoods’.
ICS team conducts annual coral reef fish surveys where identification skills are key. This short training exercise with Hilton Labriz Resort Seychelles is a training that ICS plans to sustain in the future.
Said Harryba (ACO)
Island Conservation Society