River plastics

February 19, 2021
At the height of the fishing season, the dai, or bagnet, is so heavy it must be lifted by machinery. Photo: Chhui Chheana/Wonders of the Mekong

The abundant schools of trey riel (Gymnostomus siamensis or Gymnostomus lobatus), fished from the Mekong in Cambodia, are coming ready-bagged these days.

Whole schools of these tiny fish, also known as Siamese or Mekong mud carp, are swimming into plastic bags, bottles and cans in the Mekong. A recent visit to the dai (bagnet) fishery in Cambodia by the USAID project Wonders of the Mekong, highlighted the large amount of trash that is coming up in the nets—and the way that trey riel are often found inside these throwaway items.

Whether the fish are after food scraps, or are using trash items as shelter from predators, is hard to say.

Check out the whole story on the Wonders of the Mekong Facebook page, in Khmer and English.

Trey riel from the Mekong. Photo: Chhui Chheana / Wonders of the Mekong

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