Many boats remain anchored at the Gilakaladindi habour. Like Mr. Prabhakara Rao’s crew, at least 30 mechanised boats had ventured into sea up to 12 nautical miles, ending their voyage with at least Rs. 30,000 loss against their expenses of Rs. 80,000 including fuel.

Prevailing unfavourable weather conditions on the sea have left the boat operators in great disappointment during the first two voyages on the Bay of Bengal since the ban on fishing was lifted on the night of May 31. Many boats remained anchored at the Gilakaladindi habour without venturing into sea for their first voyage as boat operators who completed their voyage reported poor catch of fish. “Rise in temperature level of the sea had dampened hopes on bumper catch of prawn. Barely 40-50 kg of Tiger prawn was caught during the first five-day fishing. It is the lowest Tiger prawn catch in the last five years,” Sykam Prabhakara Rao, a boat operator, told The Hindu.

Like Mr. Prabhakara Rao’s crew, at least 30 mechanised boats had ventured into sea up to 12 nautical miles, ending their voyage with at least Rs. 30,000 loss against their expenses of Rs. 80,000 including fuel. The price of Tiger prawn is Rs. 950 a kg in the domestic market. However, the fishermen felt unlucky as rains are playing spoilsport. In the first two voyages, the average catch of prawn was less than 700 kg, including varieties of Shenku, Gulla, Red and Tiger Prawn. “Had there been at least a spell of rain by early June, the catch would be much more. However, there is no hope on early rain till date,” said another boat operator Nooka Durga Rao. Fishermen on the sea now are also complaining that the Tuna fish catch was also very less in comparison with the earlier seasons. The fishermen spoke to The Hindu opined that the impact of the 45-day ban on the rise of marine fish population could be estimated once the rains arrive and based on the fish catch.

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