- Project Leader : Mitsunaga Yasushi (Kinki University, Faculty of Agriculture)
- Collaborators : Thavee Viputhanumas (Department of Fisheries Thailand, Inland Fisheries Bureau)
- : Boonsong Richaroendham (Department of Fisheries Thailand, Inland Fisheries Bureau)
- : Kobayashi Satoru (Kyoto University, Center For Southeast Asian Studies)
- : Arai Nobuaki (Kyoto University, Field Science Education and Research Center (FSERC))
- : Mitamura Hiromichi (Kyoto University, Graduate School of Informatics)
Outline of Research
The objective of this study is to understand the movement patterns of hatcheryreared Mekong giant catfish released into a reservoir in Thailand. The study provides information concerning optimal catfish-release strategy. In this study, hatcheryreared Mekong giant catfish are tagged with acoustic transmitters, released into the Kaeng Krachan Reservoir, Thailand, and monitored by high-resolution acoustic telemetry (horizontal accuracy: 10m).
The Mekong giant catfish Pangasianodon gigas is endemic to the Mekong River basin and is one of the largest freshwater fish in the world, measuring up to 3 m in length and weighing in excess of 300 kg. The giant catfish is a major fisheries species that has a rich cultural significance in the Mekong region. At present, the catfish is listed in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) Appendix I. Artificial propagation techniques for the catfish were developed by the Thai Department of Fisheries in 1983. Hatchery-reared juveniles and young immature catfish have been released into reservoirs, as well as the Mekong River, in Thailand. The objective of the study is to understand the movement patterns of hatchery-reared Mekong giant catfish released into a reservoir in Thailand by high-resolution acoustic telemetry.
The Thai government has studied behaviour and ecology of the Mekong giant catfish as the King’s Project for the species conservation and stock enhancement. The Mekong Giant Catfish Tracking Project (MCTP) has been established in 2001 in order to understand the migration, movement patterns, and habitat use of the catfish. This study provides biological information concerning optimal catfish-release strategy.
This study on movement patterns of the catfish contributes to the stock enhancement in the Mekong River Basin and other water bodies, and to the maintenance of a rich culture in the Mekong region of which the catfish has been a symbol.
Mekong giant catfish with children’s smile at the Kaeng Krachan reservoir
Beautiful sunset with clear air after a squall at the Kaeng Krachan reservoir