China - Fish Farmers Harvest Troubled Waters With Floating Villages

Fishermen like Zhu Chunfu have hauled their living from the seas off the Chinese province of Fujian for generations, but what happens when over-harvesting causes fish stocks to collapse?

In the case of coastal Xiapu county, you turn to raising the fish yourself, a shift that has made it one of China’s most important aquaculture sites and spawned communities floating at sea.

The water in this area of maze-like bays and coves is covered by a patchwork of hundreds of floating platforms where fishermen live and tend to underwater expanses of nets and cages teeming with sea cucumbers, yellow croakers, seaweed and other marine produce.

“My ancestors were fishing in the sea ages ago, and when there were not enough fish to catch, we started to make a living by aquaculture,” Zhu said, standing next to a small hut where he lives for several months of the year with seven others.

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