The Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS) management division in the northern part of the province conducted a Key Informant Interview (KII) from July 17 to 21, 2023, focusing on reef fish for food (RFF) collectors in the barangays of Liminangcong and Tumbod.

The PCSD said the interview was part of the Wildlife Management Fund (WMF) project titled “Enhanced Monitoring of RFF Species.”

The primary objective of the KII activity was to gather essential species data through direct interviews with RFF collectors, the individuals with valuable firsthand knowledge and experience regarding these economically significant marine species.

The PCSD said that by better understanding the nature, population growth, numbers, and behavior of RFF, authorities aim to strengthen conservation and protection policies, marine spatial planning, and fishery management in the municipality of Taytay.

RFF collectors play a vital role in the local economy and culture of Palawan. These species serve as a staple food source for many communities, highlighting the necessity of sustainable management practices.

The KII aimed to bridge the gap between scientific research and traditional ecological knowledge, fostering a collaborative approach to ensure the long-term viability of RFF populations and their surrounding ecosystems.

The project’s implementation was made possible through close collaboration with the Barangay Local Government Unit (BLGU) of Taytay, showcasing the importance of community engagement and local support in promoting effective conservation measures.

Speaking about the significance of the KII, Dr. Maria Santos, head of the PCSD Staff District Management Division-North, expressed her enthusiasm, stating, the data collected from this KII will serve as an important foundation for evidence-based decision-making in managing marine resources.

It will enhance the understanding of the ecological dynamics of RFF species and guide us in formulating appropriate policies to ensure the sustainability of our marine biodiversity.