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Mooring buoys deployed to protect coral reefs in Patong

Mooring buoys deployed to protect coral reefs in Patong

PHUKET: The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) has launched its latest campaign to install mooring buoys at popular marine tourism locations to help prevent damage to coral reefs in the area.

By The Phuket News

Monday 21 November 2022, 10:19AM

The campaign began with the installment of mooring buoys in Patong Bay on Friday (Nov 18), launched by DMCR Deputy Director General Apichai Ekwanakul.

Present for the occasion was Phuket Vice Governor Amnuay Pinsuwan joined by Ukrit Staphumin, Director of the DMCR’s Marine Resources Conservation Division, along with representatives from the Navy and heads of a host of local government agencies, including Patong Mayor Chalermsak Maneesri..

Mr Ukrit explained that Patong Bay is home to 633.42 rai  of protected coral reefs. Some 20 mooring buoys were deployed to help protect those reefs from boat operators dropping anchor on them.

“The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources has a duty to take care to maintain conservation and restore coral resources in areas outside the national park boundaries, especially coral reef tourist attractions in the six provinces along the Andaman Sea coast,” he said.

There are 29,125.88 rai of coral reefs along the Thai Andaman coast, Mr Ukrit said.

“The objective is to prevent the destruction of coral reefs from boats dropping anchor in the areas,” he added.

Laguna Phuket

In total 418 buoys are to be installed in 33 areas to help protect the corals, Mr Ukrit added.

In Phuket alone there are 130 buoys at 11 locations, he said.

“The Patong Bay area is an important marine tourist attraction of Phuket which many tourists visit, and there are more than 100 boats that take tourists to various important places throughout the area, so these mooring buoys are needed to prevent the boats from dropping anchor [onto corals] when they take tourists to see the coral reefs,” Mr Ukrit explained.

The DMCR has been conducting its ongoing campaign to install mooring buoys to help protect coral reefs since 1992, Mr Ukrit noted.

Vice Governor Amnuay praised the campaign, saying it was much needed to help protect the natural tourist attractions around Phuket.

The DMCR conducted many campaigns to protect the natural beauty of Phuket, including projects to protect the island’s mangroves, Vice Governor Amnuay said.

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JohnC | 22 November 2022 - 08:23:29

Far too little, far too late! If they had listened 40+ years ago when the early dive company owners tried telling officials to do these very same things then the corals of Thailand might have stood a chance of surviving and even thriving. But because they were all foreigners nobody in authority wanted to hear what they had to say. (Farang Reu Mark!)

harald | 22 November 2022 - 00:12:01

for some of the armchair experts here. not far from tritrang beach in the bay from patong everybody can see the coral reef at low tide quite clearly. and even better while snorkeling or diving

charles | 21 November 2022 - 22:04:45

yes there are coral reefs in Patong bay , i've been out there diving on cleanups, Funny thing though is they dropped some of these on the edge of Kata reef last week & no mention whatsoever about that . BTW DMCR needs to install the buoy's around Kata reef again before some snorkelers or divers get hit by a longtail or jetski 

Kurt | 21 November 2022 - 18:06:34

Corals. reefs in Patong Bay? Hahaha.  In 2000 I was on a private yacht, anchored in middle of Patong Bay during New Years Eve Day. Water depth there was 7-8 metres. We did equipment test diving. The see floor was just white sand with sea grass.

skorchio | 21 November 2022 - 14:01:19

eh, what reef in Patong? gone 30 yrs ago fellas


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