Request for Expressions of Interest: Consultancy to establish size limits for key species of coastal finfish in Funafuti Lagoon

PROP World Bank Logo

The Tuvalu Government has received financing from the World Bank toward the cost of the Pacific Regional Oceanscape Program (PROP), and the project intends to apply part of the proceeds for the following consulting services.

The consulting services (“the Services”) include the following objectives:

  • Identify 20 or so ‘key species for Funafuti that important for food security ad seem to ne at risk of excessive harvesting before reaching sexual maturity;
  • Design a practical and cost effective sampling programme, building on existing creel surveys that will provide robust estimates of the size at maturity of these species taking into account seasonality;
  • Initiate sampling programme and provide training for TFD staff in assessing gonad development in a range of species as well as compiling and analyzing the results to produce sound based recommendations for size limits;
  • The propose level of input for this assignment is around 35 days and to start as soon as travel restriction eases or lifted.

The detailed Terms of Reference (TOR) for this assignment can be downloaded here: ToR for Tuvalu reef fish size limits study

The Tuvalu Fisheries Department now invites eligible consulting firms (“Consultants”) to indicate their interest in providing the Services. Interested Consultants should provide information demonstrating that they have the required qualifications and relevant experience to perform the Services.

The attention of interested Consultants is drawn to paragraph 1.9 of the World Bank’s http://www.worldbank.org/html/opr/consult/contents.html (January 2011 edition), and (“Consultant Guidelines”), setting forth the World Bank’s policy on conflict of interest. The best qualified firm to carry out the services will be selected in accordance with the Selection Based on Consultant’s Qualifications (CQS) method set out in the Consultant Guidelines, and based on the following criteria  Firm’s core business and years in business, Relevant experience in the area of this assignment, Technical and managerial capability of the firm, Mandatory requirements highlighted in the TOR.

For further information you can email: proptuv@gmail.com/ OR proptuv@tuvalufisheries.tv  during office hours: 0800 to 1700.

Expressions of interest must be submitted by e-mailed to the above email address before the close of business on April 23, 2020.

Tuvalu Government COVID19 Travel Advisory 24 Feb 2020

 

Tuvalu-crestThis advisory was issued by the Ministry of Health, Social Welfare and Gender Affairs, Department of Health on 24th February 2020.

As of 24 February 2020, there are no confirmed or suspected cases of the coronavirus in Tuvalu. Effective immediately and until further notice, as part of the Tuvalu Government’s continuing efforts to contain the global spread of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), now officially called COVID-19, Tuvalu borders (air and seaports) are closed to persons who have visited or transited through mainland China or any ‘high risk’ country within 14 days of their intended travel to Tuvalu. All travelers in these categories must remain in self-isolation in a country that is not ‘high risk’ for 14 days before traveling to Tuvalu.

Given the global spread of the virus, the government has decided on this measure of precaution in the interest of mitigating the risk of an outbreak of the virus in Tuvalu. The Tuvalu Government continues to work closely with its international carriers to ensure that all travelers who fall under these restrictions are not permitted to board flights from Suva, Fiji or Tarawa, Kiribati or enter Tuvalu waters on shipping vessels. Shipping vessel operators in Tuvalu are also mandated to submit their voyage memo, listing seafarers on board and report any person on board who has been sick in the last 14 days.

In addition to the existing integrated Tuvalu ‘Immigration /Customs /Health Declaration Form’, other precautionary border control measures are being conducted at the airport and seaport; including the completion of a supplementary health declaration form (specific to COVID-19) and compulsory health screening, including infrared temperature checks and further examination where necessary upon arrival.

Tuvalu deems a COVID-19 high risk country as one where there is ‘local transmission’ (i.e. COVID-19 cases with possible or confirmed transmission outside of China). This information can be sourced from WHO’s daily situational report.

General Hygiene Tips

❖ Do not travel if you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical advice early.
❖ Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.
❖ When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue – discard tissue immediately into a
closed bin and clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
❖ Tell your health care provider if you have traveled in an area in China where 2019-nCoV has been reported, you have been in close contact with someone who has traveled from China or you have visited a country in the last 14 days that has reported ‘ local’ transmission of the virus.

Respiratory symptoms with fever can have a range of causes, and depending on your personal travel history and circumstances,
2019-nCoV could be one of them.

For more information about Basic Protective Measures refer to: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public
For more information for the latest coronavirus confirmed case numbers refer to: https://bit.ly/31LzXSB
WHO’s daily situational report, available at: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/situation-reports

Refresher training for Funafuti Fishermen: New fishing techniques

IMG_0135The Tuvalu Fisheries Department (TFD), in collaboration with  the Overseas Fishery Cooperation Foundation (OFCF) of Japan, have been providing technical training for local fishermen in Funafuti.

Mr Keizo Takahashi, a specialist expert in fishing techniques and post-harvest processing of fish, from OFCF Japan, facilitated this training. Assistance was provided by TFD’s Operations and Development (O&D) Fisheries officers and Mr Toma Hayashi, the O&D Fishery Advisor.

The training is part of the technical assistance provided by OFCF of Japan, with the help of the TFD. The training focused mainly on new methods of fishing. Fishermen upgraded their skills learning to use new fishing gears and new techniques for trolling.

The training, run at the Fisheries building, commenced last week and ended this week with the construction of a smoking box.

There were 20 participants, fishermen, who attended the training. Mr Nelly Seniola, Operation & Development Fisheries Training Officer said that the training was indeed advantageous and successful.

One of the fisherman participants, Mr Faatumua Suinauna, said, “the training was indeed important for us fishermen, where from my point of view  I have  learned quite new methods of utilizing new fishing gears, and most important was the part on construction’s of a smoke box”. Mr Suinauana also thanked OFCF expert officers and Fisheries staff for their great support in providing such training in updating fishermen on new fishing techniques.

The training was funded by the OFCF of Japan.

IMG_0158The OFCF have been working in collaboration with the TFD in terms of providing technical and financial support through Fisheries Development Assistance. OFCF is a non-profit organization which conducts cooperative programs under general guidance and funding contributions from the Japanese Government.

Our Organisation: Plans for 2020

In 2020 will see some strengthening of the Department’s staffing, reflecting the growing importance and complexity of systems for the oceanic fishery, as well as the growth of the observer programme and transhipment monitoring. We also recognise the need to provide more support for small-scale fisheries management and development. Our 2 inter-island vessels (Tala Moana and Manaui) have increased the workload of the Operations & Development Section. The new structure shown above will be implemented, for the most part, in 2020. Further changes will be needed in subsequent years as the work programme develops in areas such as coastal fisheries management, compliance and enforcement, laboratory services, mariculture, and support for fish marketing from the outer islands. Pay grades may also need to be reviewed to reflect additional responsibilities and for greater consistency. The Department comprises four sections, with different areas of responsibility:
  • The Administration Section, which is led by the Director, includes the Deputy Director, Legal Officer, Economist, Information Officer and IT Manager, as well as administrative staff. The group is responsible for fisheries access agreements, fisheries policy including regional initiatives, management of development projects, as well as planning and administration of the Division.
  • The Oceanic Fisheries Section, led by a Principal Fisheries Officer (PFO), is responsible for Monitoring, Control and Surveillance of the tuna fishery. Main work areas include vessel licensing, reporting and data collection, VMS and VDS monitoring, coordinating aerial surveillance and patrol boat operations, transhipment monitoring and the observer programme.
  • The Coastal Fisheries Division, also led by a PFO, is responsible for inshore fisheries resource assessment and management, as well as monitoring of the marine environment. The Division works closely with the Kaupules and other stakeholders in the community. Three teams, each led by a Senior Fisheries Officer, are responsible for work: in Funafuti; the outer islands; and on resource monitoring and assessment (including aquaculture).
  • The Operation and Development Division is responsible for the operation of the Department’s two vessels – Manaui and Tala Moana – including managing charters. The Division also has responsibility for the FAD programme, promoting sea safety, and training in fishing and fish processing. The development of boatbuilding and the new offshore fishing project will be led by this Division, working closely with local fishermen and their associations.

Progressing the Funafuti Reef Fisheries Stewardship Plan

The Coastal team of the Tuvalu Fisheries Department (TFD), consulted with the Funafuti community just before Christmas to review the current status of the Funafuti Reef Fisheries Stewardship Plan (FRFSP).

This FRFSP consultation started with speeches from heads of the Funafuti Community, Chief Executive officer of the Ministry of Fisheries and Trade, Mr Nikolasi Apinelu and Mr Samasoni Finikaso, Director of Fisheries.

There followed by presentations on the current progress of the FRFSP from TFD officers, and Funafuti Conservation Area (FCA) officer representing from the Funafuti Town Council. The RIDGE to Reef (R2R) officer also presented and outlined their linkage with the FRFSP with their contributions and support provided to the Funafuti community.

There was an open discussion, suggestions and recommendations at the end of the presentations to improve the future operation of the FRFSP.

This FRFSP was first initiated through this Fisheries Monitoring and Management Consultation (FMMC). There were a total of four consultations in 2017. This was the first series of FRFSP consultation established to alert the public on the condition of the reef and inshore marine resources in Funafuti and to start the process of recovering back to fertile levels.

The Pacific Regional Oceanscape Program (PROP), under the World Bank, supported the FRFSP in terms of providing financial assistance to implement activities and equipment.

The TFD First and Second creel reports show that inshore fisheries in Funafuti are overfished. In the first report “A total of 14,508 specimens were landed and measured just in Funafuti during the study, including 180 species of fishes. Of the 22 species that could be evaluated for signs of overfishing, 13 (60% of species) had 50% or more of the catch under the size of maturity”.

Senior Fisheries officer for Coastal division on Funafuti Mr Sitia Maheu said: “The TFD and Funafuti Council are urging the Funafuti community and other island communities who resides on Funafuti to comply with the Funafuti Reef Fish Stewardship Plan and other Regulations to return the abundance of reef fishes in Funafuti”.

The TFD is and will continue to work in cooperating with the Funafuti community, Funafuti Town Council, R2R and PROP to ensure the future operation and effectiveness of the FRFSP.

Marine resources are the primary source of protein for the people of Tuvalu and therefore the Tuvalu Fisheries Department is working to manage and monitor inshore fisheries for the livelihoods and food security for the whole of Tuvalu.

Creel Survey Report shows overfishing for inshore species

Coastal staff monitoring a fisher’s catch

The Coastal Team of the Tuvalu Fisheries Department (TFD) and local data collectors from eight islands of Tuvalu have found that overfishing is now a major issue for Tuvalu inshore fishes. The Coastal Team’s survey data, shows that inshore fisheries throughout Tuvalu are showing stress.

According to the TFD Creel Survey Report No. 2 there were a total of 39,263 specimens measured during the survey (2015-2018), including 268 inshore species of fishes in 106 families and 134 genera, and a total of 42.13 tones of catches measured. The results show that 39% of species were being landed with 50% or more of the fish undersized; that is, smaller than their known size at which they can reproduce. This shows that there is a pressure on the coastal reef fish resources on all islands surveyed. 

The TFD currently play a role in Funafuti, in partnership with the Kaupule, fishers and communities in managing this issue through implementing Funafuti Reef Fishery Stewardship Plan (FRFSP). Among the FRFSP priorities is to strengthen the Funafuti Conservation Area (FCA), establisg size limits for fishes and encourage the diverion of fishing effort more offshore to tuna and other pelagic species. This is the second creel report the Coastal section has prepared since the first creel report TFD Creel Survey Report, 1 was published in 2016.

The analysis of creel survey data is a regular part of the Coastal Fisheries Section work. This work is being done to provide anonymous information on the fishers, data on the resources being caught and the effort required in a way that can be used to assess the health of the inshore fishery. One of the main aspects of the creel survey is to identify stressed resources in need of management.

the Coastal Section of TFD has been undertaking its creel survey since April 2015 and the work is on-going on all islands of Tuvalu except for Niulakita. Monitoring over time will provide feedback to management actions by providing a trace of percent of the catch below size at maturity over time. If management is successful in improving the state of the resources, we should see the percentage of undersized reef fishes decline. Overall productivity is expected to increase when the breeding population is improved.

Outer Island Data Collectors (OIDCs) and the Coastal Survey Team have been meeting fishers at their landing sites to interview them and collect data on the methods and gear they are using for fishing. Fishing locations and their perceptions on the fishery and changes over time are also collected. At the same time, the team measure and weigh each specimen in the catch. All data are then entered into a database from which the coastal team can access results to assess the resources.

Collecting data is an on-going task with data collectors from all Tuvalu islands providing much of the data on fish identifications and filling in details on all parts of the survey sheet. The Coastal Team conduct awareness programmes and consultations with communities on the results of the surveys and the implementation of the Funafuti Reef Fisheries Stewardship Plan. Fishery management are also being developed with the Kaupules and communities on all the outer islands of Tuvalu

Dry-docking RV Tala Moana

RV Tala Moana

The Fisheries Research Vessel, Tala Moana will soon dock in Suva, Fiji for maintenance and repair. The Tala Moana is planning to dock next month for a one week period from the 2nd to the 6th December 2019 to fix it starboard main engine. It is planned that the vessel will leave Funafuti on the 21st November 2019.

The vessel has 9 crew, including the Skipper, Mate, Chief Engineer, Second Engineer, and the Bosun, the Second Able Seaman, an ongoing Seafarer and two qualified motormen.

The Fisheries Department operates the Tala Moana vessel and has confirmed when the  Tala Moana will be leaving for Suva. The purpose of the work is to carry out normal maintenance and get the Tala Moana back to its full operation. This vessel provides an important service to the Tuvalu Fisheries Department TFD, and for other Government Departments and  as well as outer island Projects and field missions. One of the regular uses of the Tala Moana is for the Coastal and Operations & Development sections to go on their quarterly “Metronome” trips to gather data and assist the Kaupules, fishermen and communities with fisheries-related matters.

The RV Tala Moana has completed at total of 69 TFD, Government, Project and Private sector charters since its arrival in late 2015.

The Tala Moana, a 32- metre steel vessel, was procured by UNDP using GEF funds allocated to Tuvalu primarily to support the operations of the NAPA2 and Ridge-to-Reef (R2R) Projects in which the Department is heavily involved. The Tala Moana was delivered in December 2015 and is better suited to passenger transport and outer-island fieldwork than the Extension Vessel Manaui. The vessel is much larger than anticipated which makes it more costly to run but also enables it to be used for Monitoring Control and Surveillance (MCS) patrols.

Coastal Team focus plan to improve inshore fisheries

IMG_1758-1-1024x768Inshore Fisheries Advisor (IFA), Dr Uschi Kaly conducted a workshop with the Coastal team of the Tuvalu Fisheries Department this week. The workshop was dedicated to developing the Coastal Section’s Annual Work Plan for 2020 and beyond, and the proposed budget for 2020-2022, alongside with polishing the Coastal Fisheries staff’s skills.

The main idea of this workshop was to develop the Coastal Annual Work Plan in relation to the newly formulated Fisheries Department Corporate Plan for 2020 to 2022.

The workshop was run over a one week period and was held at the Fisheries Conference room from the 21st to the 25th October 2019.

There was an intensive consultation between the IFA and the coastal team. They discussed the different activities and goals for the Coastal Section for the next three years. The work plan will focus on delivering assistance to the Tuvalu Community at large, including support to Kaupules and fishers in terms of inshore fisheries-related issues. the main tasks will focus on improving fishery resource monitoring and management, implementing projects and research, monitoring environmental variables central to the health of fisheries and implementing the Funafuti Reef Fisheries Stewardship Plan (FRFSP).

Mr Lale Petaia said, “ Dr Uschi Kaly’s presence helps in providing a guideline towards completing a more realistic, well developed Annual Work Plan and of course the budget.

Dr Uschi Kaly, along with Mr Lindsay Chapman will be working as inshore fisheries advisers to TFD over the next 6 months during 4 one month trips to Funafuti. They will be assisting with many aspects of the Section’s work, plus undertake training as needed.

Tuvalu Observers trained on e-reporting and Safety

Tuvalu Observers group photo was taken during the 3rd day of e-reporting & safety workshop

Three Observer training Officers from the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) Agency conducted training for Tuvalu Observers in October. The training was designed to enhance Tuvalu Observer e-reporting and safety, through utilizing tablets to enter data electronically instead of using the old system of workbooks.

There were 35 observers who joined the training together with Fisheries Oceanic staff. Some other Observers didn’t have the opportunity to join as some of them were on duty on board fishing vessels, and some of them were on leave.

The training was run over four days, which started on Tuesday 15th October 2019 and ended on Friday 18th October 2019 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The training was held at the Tuvalu Fisheries Conference room.

Mr Hulo Simeti said, “this is very important training to Tuvalu Observer whereas it improves their safety at sea while on duty and as well as improve the quality of the progress of observer data through reporting electronically”.

The three Officers from PNA Agency left Funafuti on Tuesday 22 October 2019.

The Tuvalu National Observer Programme is managed by the Oceanic Section of the Fisheries Department. They work on full operation review and performance audit of the program. There is about 80 total number of active observers, among them 30 certified debriefers, two trainee debriefers, four debriefer assessors, two certified observers with cross-endorsement for the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC), five observers deployed on Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) trips, 39 observers deployed on PNA trips and 69 deployed on National program trips.

Closed:Expressions of Interest: An Environmental and Social Safeguard Consultant

The Tuvalu Fisheries Department has received financing from the World Bank toward the cost of the Tuvalu PROP, and intends to apply part of the proceeds for consulting services.

The consulting services (“the Services”) include managing, review, monitor and report the project Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) and all PROP environmental and social safeguards requirements; train and conduct safeguards awareness with stakeholders and the public in general. The services requires a part-time inputs of 40 days of a year. The expected start date will be as soon as possible.

The detailed Terms of Reference (TOR) for the assignment can be found at the following link: Environmental and Social Safeguard Consultant TOR-2019 FINAL

The Tuvalu Fisheries Department now invites eligible individuals (“Consultants”) to indicate their interest in providing the Services. Interested Consultants should provide information demonstrating that they have the required qualifications and relevant experience to perform the Services (attach curriculum vitae with a description of experience in similar assignments, similar conditions, etc.). Firms’ staff may express interest through the employing firm for the assignment and, under such situation, only the experience and qualifications of individuals shall be considered in the selection process. The criteria for selecting the Consultant are: related required qualifications and experience of the individual.

The attention of interested Consultants (including firms) is drawn to paragraph 1.9 of the World Bank’s Guidelines: Selection and Employment of Consultants under IBRD Loans and IDA Credits & Grants by World Bank Borrowers Guidelines: Selection and Employment of Consultants by World Bank Borrowers (January 2011 edition), (“Consultant Guidelines”), setting forth the World Bank’s policy on conflict of interest.

A Consultant will be selected in accordance with Section V of the Consultant Guidelines. Firms expressing interest and proposing the name of an individual for the assignment should take note of paragraph 5.5 of the Consultant Guidelines.

Further information can be obtained at the address above during office hours from 0800 to 1600 hours.

Expressions of interest must be delivered in a written form to the address above (in person, or by e-mail) by October 7, 2019.