Protected Areas Not Exempt as Blast Fishing Blows Up in Sri Lanka

It was a perfect morning in Pigeon Island National Park in eastern Sri Lanka, where a group of tourists in a boat was taking in the rich marine life in the water around them. All of a sudden, there was a loud blast close by. As silence settled once again, they saw the fish that had been flitting nimbly about now either floating dead on the surface or struggling to swim. Through the clear water, they could see more dead fish in the seabed.

Hans-Georg Kehse, the leader of the tour group, realized they’d just narrowly escaped an explosive meant for catching fish.

“Fish bombs or dynamite fishing has become a common occurrence in and around Pigeon Island National Park, where sounds of such explosions have become frequent,” said Kehse, who operates a dive center near the park.

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