Kozhikode: Seven fishing boats with baby sardines were seized at the Thikkody fish landing centre in Kozhikode.
The boats, originating from the Koyilandy Harbour, were seized during a joint raid conducted by the Fisheries Department, Marine Enforcement and the Coastal Police.
Fisheries Extension Officer O Athira told Onmanorama that while the Minimum Legal Size (MLS) of oil sardines is 10 centimetres, those seized from the boats were between 6-8 cm.
The authorities had seized two boats from the Koyilandy Harbour on Tuesday and two others from Puthiyappa the next day.
According to fisheries officers, the baby sardines are used as manure. However, its capture is prohibited to maintain spawning stock and to protect juvenile fish.
V Suneer, Assistant Director of Fisheries said that strict action, including imposing fines, will be taken against those who caught the baby sardines.
The raid team comprised Fisheries Officer, O Athira, Coastal Police SCPO Vijesh, CPO (guard) from Marine Enforcement Jithin Das, Coastal Police Warden Akhil and rescue guards Sumesh and Hamilesh.