Prachuab Khirikhan’s Department of Fisheries getting ready to breed giant clams to celebrate the Auspicious Occasion of HM The Queen’s Birthday, 12 August

The Prachuab Khirikhan Coastal Fishery Research and Development Center have increased the activity of breeding giant clams, one of the large clam species, with the end result of eventually setting them free into the sea. Hopefully, the ecological results will prove to be very positive Also, the center will take an important role as a tourist attraction to allow people to learn about the lives of marine creatures, and importantly to celebrate the auspicious occasion that HM. Queen Sirikit turned 72.

Mr. Nabhadol Bhuvapanich, Director of Prachuab Khirikhan Coastal Fishery Research and Development Center, Khlong Whale Sub-District, Muang, Prachuab Khirikhan, revealed to the media that the Department of Fisheries assigned the Center to conduct the research and to breed 3 main kinds of giant clams which are found in Thailand: Enduris, Sihama, and Graygas.

This will be done by the Department of Fisheries of Prachuab Khirikhan and other centers, They have been previously bred in nursery ponds to increase the quantity, and eventually are set free into the sea, inlets, and other appropriate places along Hua Hin Area, including Koh Tao, and Koh Singh To.

The existence of various kinds of giant clams in inlets along the coasts are considered to be extremely advantageous to the ecological system because, once set free they will dwell beneath the earth and knolls under the sea, and when they mature into adult clams they will take a role to create the underwater base responsible to filter amounts of water until it is hygienically clean as well as and acting as shadows for other kinds of aquatic creatures and corals. The inlets will be eventually fresh and ecologically balanced again.

Before giant clams can be set free into the sea, each research center, particularly that of Khlong Whale, Prachuab Khirikhan Province, will carefully select excellent breeds. Firstly the tiny ones will stay in a 1-meter-wide and 5-meter-long cement nursery pond which is specifically designed to have closed roofs to allow only a little light through. Sea water with moderate levels of salt will be kept to a suitable level with oxygen flowing through it at all times.

The immature baby clams will be additionally fed with special powdered food. When the clams mature (about 3-6 months) they will be put into their recognized classifications, into bigger ponds until the right time for them to be set free. Mr. Bhuvapanich also added that the project on giant clams breeding was first established in 1997 by the royal order of HM The Queen.

She assigned the Department of Fisheries to conduct the activities and to first set the clams free along the corners around the Gulf of Thailand such as the front of Sai Ree Beach, Rock of King Chulalongkorn Military Base, Chumporn Province, and the front of Aquatic Creature Breed Conservation Unit, Koh Tao and Koh Pa-Ngan, Surat Thani Province, on June 10, 1997.

The breeding, subsequently, has been practiced within each center and set free along the inlets of Rayong and Chonburi Provinces, in the areas of Sa Mae Sanm Sattaheep, Pattaya, Khung Kra Ben Bay, including in Chanthaburi and Trad Provinces. It is revealed that the populations of giant clams has increased and is healthily growing along the areas where they have been placed.

Each year, the Department of Fisheries, Navy, Department of Marine Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, and clubs for conservation and divers, explore and examine the condition of the clams.

“As for the Prachuab Khirikhan Coastal Fishery Research and Development Center at Khlong Whale, the officers have worked hard to do the research and to breed giant clams according to the royal desire of HM the Queen, and to the policy of Department of Fisheries."

"A total of approximately 42.872 mature clams have been set free into various areas of the Gulf of Thailand such as the provinces of Prachuab Khirikhan, Chumporn, Surat Thani, Rayong, Chanthaburi, and Trad whereas the other 3.000 found in the deep sea in the area of Andaman, in addition, have been done along the coasts of Phuket, Phang-Nga, and Krabi. This action is considered the masterpiece of the Department of Fisheries” addressed Mr. Bhuvapanich.

In accordance with Mr. Bhuvapanich, the Center at Khlong Whale is not only the source in which a great number of giant clams have been bred, but also the place where other kinds of shellfishes call home. These are considered as economic clams which the local fishermen are able to breed, and to distribute to restaurants. A great number of kinds of fishes, and marine corals, also, have been bred here at the Center, and its gained productivities have been adapted as various kinds of transformed corals, and coral beverages.

It is believed that, from now on the breeding system, research, and promotion of marine creature of Thailand had best take more crucial role since the quantity of Thailand’s marine balance is being decreased, this deriving from the excessively increased fishing, human consumption, transformation, and exportation. Marine creatures, therefore, have decreased in numbers and their existence is insufficient to people’s demand, particularly the fishery conducted around the areas of Gulf of Thailand.

It is necessary to commercially have some breeding points to respond the demand of coastal fisherpersons. This issue is being currently expanded and run by the Department of Fisheries and the Research Center so that Thailand can have a healthy number of marine creatures.

According to the Center at Khlong Whale, it is not only where the research, promotion, and guidance has been practiced, but also the suitable place for general people and students in terms of academic intellect and studies. Also, it takes a role as eco-tourist attraction, and academic center in which there are a great number of people daily visiting after their appreciation at Wah Ko Marine Creature Breeding Center.

Anyone who is interested in and would like to participate in giant clam, fish, and marine coral breeding in terms of business and fishery, the Center welcomes everyone. For more detailed information, please contact +66 3266 1133.

Hua Hin Today