What's Obirame Restoration Group?
The Shirbetsu River is a beautiful river that runs through the southern part of Hokkaido. The river is considered the southernmost habitat for the endangered Ito. Many anglers have been challenged to catch the "big one" and some fish have really bent their rods. Unfortunately, due to the recent problems of environmental pollution, dam building and over fishing, the Obirame is on the edge of extinction. We, the Obirame Restoration Group (chairman Mr. Kusajima Seisaku) are trying to restore OBIRAME populations in collaboration with anglers, researchers and citizens.
OBIRAME Restoration 30 years Plan
Since the Obirame faces such a threat of extinction, we cannot rely on river restoration projects alone. We must also implement a conservation hatchery and reintroduction program to increase the chance for Obirame's survival. In 2001 the Obirame Restoration Group crafted the following plan with assistance from conservation biologists.
Actions of OBIRAME Restoration Group
1. Shelter and protect several pairs of adult Obirame and attempt artificial hatching for reintroduction.
2. Research the environment of the Shiribetsu River and identify best methods for conservation and restoration of Obirame habitat.
3. Research the social and community conditions of the Shiribetsu River and make proposals for conservation of Obirame habitat.
4. Promote the importance of Ito conservation to stakeholders and community.
5. Educate students and young people about Ito conservation and make regular school trips around the Shiribetsu River.