BEIJING, April 1 (Xinhua) -- The first annual fishing ban began on China's Yellow River on Sunday, in an effort to protect fishery resources and biodiversity in the second longest river in the country.
The ban, which will be effective until June 30, covers the main stream, three major lakes, and 13 tributaries of the Yellow River, according to a previous statement from the Ministry of Agriculture.
In Binzhou in east China's Shandong Province, the local fisheries regulator has taken measures to ensure that the ban is strictly implemented.
"There should be no fishing boats or nets in the Yellow River, and no fish caught from the river on the market," according to an order.
In Qihe County, local authorities have advised fishermen of the ban through various means of communication, including WeChat messages, posters, and notices in local newspapers.
On the upper reaches of the Yellow River, fishery regulators in Qinghai Province launched an awareness campaign earlier this month, advising fishermen of the legal consequences of breaking the fishing ban.
"We will step up our efforts to raise fishermen's awareness of protecting the fishery resources and ecosystems in the Yellow River," said He Xiaolin, director of the provincial fishing administration.
During the campaign, regulators also seized and destroyed nearly 50 items of illegal fishing equipment.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, fishing for scientific studies, and taming and breeding purposes during the ban period should be approved by authorities of provincial or higher levels.
Provinces and autonomous regions can extend the fishing ban according to local needs, said the ministry.
China has also imposed a fishing ban along the Yangtze River, the longest river in the country. The annual ban, which runs from March 1 to June 30, covers the spawning season for most of the river's aquatic life. It includes the entire river as well as key tributaries and lakes.
A similar fishing ban has applied to the Huaihe River, which runs almost parallel between the Yangtze River and the Yellow River.