Protected Species

The Aquaculture Directorate is interested in the protection and conservation of protected species and is involved in a number of projects with Nature Trust Malta and MEPA. 

Turtle Rehabilitation Unit

A number of injured turtles are generally brought to the Aquaculture Directorate by members of The Marine Rescue Team (Nature Trust Malta - NTM) or fishermen. These turtles are housed at the directorate within the Turtle Rehabilitation Unit, where they are assessed by a Vet and receive the necessary treatment from NTM staff. After rehabilitation, the directorate in conjunction with the Nature Protection Unit of the Malta Environment and Planning Authority release the turtles back to their natural environment from a sandy beach. The released turtles are tagged so that useful information on their growth and migration patterns could be obtained in the event of recapture.

The Killifish Conservation Project

The Killifish Conservation Project is a collaborative project between the Aquaculture Directorate, Nature Trust (Malta) and MEPA aimed at the conservation of the endangered species of killifish Aphanius fasciatus (Nardo), known in Maltese as “Bużaqq”.

The project’s main objectives are to raise awareness and educate the public on the need to preserve the species and its habitat; to manage the Natura 2000 site at il-Magħluq tal-baħar at Marsascala effectively and in a sustainable way where one of the endangered populations is found; to secure a viable population in captivity and carry out controlled captive-breeding programmes aimed at preserving the genetic stocks of Aphanius fasciatus in Malta.