Pinrang Regency is one of the Level II Regions in the Province of South Sulawesi, Indonesia. Which has an area of 1,961.77 km² with a population of ± 351.118 people with a population density of 171 people/km2. Pinrang Regency is located at the coordinates between 43°10’30” – 30°19’13” North Latitude and 119°26’30” – 119°47’20” East Longitude. The distance from Makassar, the provincial capital to Pinrang Regency, is ± 173 kilometers. The area of Pinrang Regency is divided into 12 sub-districts, of which six sub-districts are coastal areas. From data from the Department of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of Pinrang Regency in 2016, the total size area of ponds was 15,675 ha, spread over six sub-districts, namely Suppa (2,203 ha), Lasinrang (1,560 ha), Mattirosompe (4,131 ha), Cempa (2,341 ha), Duampanua (5,101 ha) and Lembang (339 ha). The primary commodities in the pond are Seaweed, Milkfish, Tiger Prawns, and Vaname shrimp. For Tiger Shrimp production in 2018 was recorded at 2,874.6 tons. In 2016, YSAI held training for 500 farmers in Pinrang. The theme that was carried out was Regional Arrangement for the increase and sustainability of shrimp production. The training was held in Jampue Village and Larinsang Village, Larinsang District, Kasiee Village, Suppa District, Data Village and Paria Village, Duampanua District, Mattombong Village, and Langa Village, Mattirosompe District. The training was carried out for almost five years. So, in early March 2021, YSAI was able to revisit Pinrang to find out the latest developments in tiger shrimp cultivation and, at the same time, fulfill the invitation of PT. Atina (one of the owners of the Ecoshrimp label in Indonesia) wants to ask for advice from YSAI so that the productivity of the fostered farmers can be further improved.
PT Atina has been operating in Pinrang since 2007. The product is specially taken from organic tiger prawns. Specifically for Pinrang, the number of organic tiger prawns absorbed in 2020 is 300 tons. To maintain the quality of organic shrimp, PT Atina cooperates with seven large collectors and 24 small collectors. The collector has an obligation to monitor the farmers so that the farmers’ tiger shrimp cultivation follows PT’s SOP. ATINA. Farmers must be incorporated in the assisted groups to facilitate supervision. The number of farmers who are members of the fostered is 993 farmers with a total of 2883 ha. According to PT Atina’s acknowledgment, 70% of the production of the fostered ponds can be absorbed. The discussion between YSAI and PT Atina revealed that the average productivity of farmers in producing tiger prawns is still very low at 150 kg/ha/year. In addition to discussing with PT. ATINA, YSAI also held discussions with the Fisheries Service of Pinrang Regency, the Lansinrang District Government, the Fisheries and Marine Service of South Sulawesi Province, the Regent of Takalar Regency, and the Takalar Brackish Water Cultivation Center.
Shrimp Fry Problem
From YSAI’s observations in the field, it can be seen that nursery farmers do not apply good fry maintenance standards. It can be seen from the design of shallow nursery ponds, the use of expired feed, and the use of unsterilized water so that the fry are susceptible to contracting diseases. Besides that, the old way of harvesting nursery fry causes the stocking of nursery fry in ponds to occur during the day. Nursery farmers use small PL fry (below PL 9), reared in the range of 3-7 days in nursery ponds. The result is, of course, not much different from the production of PL 15 fry produced by ordinary Hatchery. In addition, farmers also experienced difficulties obtaining tiger fry due to the lack of hatchery-producing tiger fry. Many tiger hatcheries have closed and have switched to producing vaname shrimp fry.
To overcome the problem of quality and scarcity of fry YSAI and PT. ATINA visited BBAP Takalar. During the meeting, YSAI and PT ATINA encouraged BBAP Takalar to produce tiger fry continuously. PT ATINA will recommend its fostered farmers to buy fry from BBAP because the fries’ quality is excellent. We also encourage BBAP Takalar to use the land it owns in Pinrang as a nursery location to become a pilot location for farmers who have nursery businesses.
Almost all traditional ponds have a shallow depth and then makes the water temperature in the pond unstable. It is hot during the day and very cold at night. Water intake also depends on the tides. So it does not produce the ideal water level. Of course, this dramatically affects the SR of shrimp. One way to increase the water level of the pond is to use a pump. Farmers rarely lift mud after harvest, which results in the accumulation of organic matter at the bottom of the pond. The scarcity of staffing is the main thing not to carry mud at the bottom of the pond. In a meeting with the Head of the Fisheries and Marine Service of Pinrang Regency, he revealed that the local government has an excavator that farmers can use to lift mud or carry out pond renovation activities. The use of excavators is more cost-effective and time-saving when compared to using human power. However, many farmers still do not use it due to farmers’ lack of knowledge about the dangers of untreated mud on shrimp farming.
Estuary and Mangrove Problems.
Another problem that YSAI found in the field was sitting at the mouth of the river. It causes the water to flow in and out of the pond. The local government does not have the authority to renovate the estuary because it is the authority of the Central Government. Farmers and local governments strongly encourage the central government to renovate river mouths to immediately increase ponds’ productivity.
In addition to the problem of shallow river estuaries in pond locations, mangroves are also rarely found. The existence of mangroves in aquatic ecosystems is essential because they can absorb organic matter. Farmers and sub-district governments have begun to realize this. Therefore, the government strongly encourages the planting of mangroves along the river. PT. ATINA itself has prepared 5000 seeds that farmers can plant. The plan is for the mangrove planting program to be completed this year.
Phronima sp as natural feed for Tiger Prawns
Organic/traditional tiger shrimp cultivation relies heavily on the availability of natural feed. One raw food available is Phronima sp which is claimed to be endemic zooplankton in Suppa sub-district, Pinrang district. In research conducted by Prof. Hattah Fattah, fry that eats phonima grows faster than fry that eats artemia.
BBAT Takalar, in discussion with YSAI, revealed that they are currently researching Phronima. Generally, Phronima sp breeds maximally in sandy soil. If a mass culture method has been found in ponds, it is hoped to increase the production of organic tiger prawns.
The ambition of the South Sulawesi Provincial Government Towards Tiger Prawns
As one of the provinces with the most significant traditional pond area in Indonesia, the Provincial Government of South Sulawesi wants to increase the productivity of existing ponds. The governor targets the productivity of tiger shrimp ponds to reach 500 kg/ha/cycle. It is not easy to achieve, considering that the current productivity is only 100 kg/ha/cycle. The provincial government will work on a 1000 ha pilot project in Pinrang district to make this happen. In a meeting with the South Sulawesi Provincial Marine and Fisheries Service with YSAI and PT Atina, the provincial government will carry out various activities to achieve the target, such as providing fry to farmers, deploying fishery instructors to ponds, intensifying the development of phronima sp feed in ponds, and developing smartphone applications for shrimp farming.
This good intention certainly deserves to be supported considering that the organic tiger shrimp market is still wide open in the international market. Like a shrimp exporter, PT ATINA often refuses consumer requests due to farmers’ limited supply of organic tiger shrimp. YSAI, as a non-profit organization concerned with sustainable shrimp farming, is committed to helping with its resources.