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Sea Around Us project newsletter, issue 48, July/August 2008 Bailey, Megan; Sea Around Us Project Jul 31, 2008

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Sea Around UsThe Sea Around Us Project NewsletterIssue 48 – July/August 2008West African marineprotected areas networkby Colette Wabnitz, Charlotte Karibuhoyeand Moussa FallFrom July 15-17, I (thefirst author of thisarticle) had theremarkable opportunity toparticipate in a workshop1on West African MarineProtected Areas (MPAs),held in Dakar, Sénégal, andconvened by the Secretariatfor the Regional MarineProtected Areas Network inWest Africa (RAMPAO –Réseau Régional d’AiresMarine Protegées enAfrique de l’Ouest).The ecoregion of “WestAfrica” officially includesMauritania, Sénégal, CapeVerde, the Gambia, GuineaBissau, Guinea (Conakry)and Sierra Leone. In 2002 aregional strategy, aimed atestablishing a functionaland representative networkof MPAs in the region wasendorsed by 10 ministers incharge of environment andfisheries in six countries.Since then, although someprotected areas in theregion such as the NationalPark of the Banc d’Arguinhave benefited fromsubstantial financial andtechnical support, mostcountries still suffer frominsufficient funds, limitedhuman capacity and weakmonitoring systems. It is inlight of these limitationsand to strengthen regionalcooperation that the MPAsof the ecoregion decided toestablish a network –RAMPAO.  Officiallyrecognized in April 2007,and further endorsed at aspecial event at the recentIUCN World ConservationCongress, the networkcurrently includes 15 out ofthe region’s 24 MPAs (threebiosphere reserves, eightnational marine parks and13 other MPAs, of whichtwo are community basedMPAs). Together they coverless than 1% of the region’sEEZ.The workshop convened 30participants from theSecretariat’s seven membercountries and includedindividuals from diversebackgrounds and with awide range of expertise(e.g.,  MPA representatives,policy makers andresearchers from localinstitutions). As anoverarching goal, the groupwas tasked with identifyingpriorities and ‘next steps’ formaking West Africa’snetwork of MPAsoperational.The mornings of the first twodays were allocated to anumber of presentationsfocusing on existingecosystem management and/or analysis tools and resource-databases developed locally:1. The web portal CIAO(Catalogue d’Informationpour l’Afrique de l’Ouest) forWest African coastal zonedata – chiefly six MPAs;2.  An ‘Observatory’ forthe Banc d’Arguin NationalPark; and3. A primarily fisheriesfocused database(regulations; effort; industrialcatch data), held by the CSRP(Commission Sous-Régionaledes Pêches www.csrpsp.org).Focus was also given to moreinternational approaches(e.g., Ecopath with Ecosim,Marxan).During the afternoonbreakout sessions participantswere asked to:1. Draft a list of MPAnetwork performanceindicators in accordance withRAMPAO’s overarching goalsand identify data required fortheir assessment; and2. Define whatparticipants see as the mostfunctional RAMPAOContinued on page 2 - MPAsPage 2Sea Around Us – July/August 2008The Sea Around Us project is a Fisheries Centre partner-ship with the Pew Charitable Trusts of Philadelphia,USA. The Trusts support nonprofit activities in the areas ofculture, education, the environment, health and human serv-ices, public policy and religion. Based in Philadelphia, the Trustsmake strategic investments to help organisations and citizensdevelop practical solutions to difficult problems. In 2000, withapproximately $4.8 billion in assets, the Trusts committed over$235 million to 302 nonprofit organisations. ISSN 1713-5214   Sea Around Us (ONLINE)The Sea Around Us project newsletter ispublished by the  Fisheries Centre at theUniversity of British Columbia. Included withthe Fisheries Centre’s newsletter FishBytes,sixissues of this newsletter are publishedannually. Subscriptions arefree of charge.Our mailingaddress is: SeaAround Us project,Aquatic EcosystemsResearch Laboratory,2202 Main Mall,Vancouver, BritishColumbia, Canada, V6T1Z4. Our fax number is (604)822-8934, and our email address isSeaNotes@fisheries.ubc.ca. All queries(including reprint requests), subscriptionrequests, and address changes should beaddressed to Megan Bailey, Sea Around UsNewsletter Editor.The Sea Around Us website may be foundat www.seaaroundus.org and contains up-to-date information on the project.information system set-up anddefine a set of utilisation criteriafor it, whilst ensuring thatsynergies with existingdatabases and partners aremaximised.It was wonderful to witness thehigh level of motivationexpressed by all participantsduring these breakout sessions.Discussions were incrediblylively, often highlighting thedifferent needs of, andapproaches employed by,individual countries, as well aspoints of view stemming fromindividual participants’backgrounds (i.e., government,research institution, etc).  Anessential element to the successof the workshop was the timeallotted to participants toreconvene and allow them toreach common ground whendrafting the overarchingresolutions.Other points ofdiscussion thatstood out and areworthy of noteinclude:1.  Theimportance ofgovernance in thesuccessfulimplementationof MPAs;2.  Theimportance ofconductingscientific studieson the ‘spillover’effects of MPAs intropical non-reefareas. Many of the potentialbenefits communicated tocommunities are in part based onscience that has been conductedin tropical reef areas, with onlylimited evidence to date for‘spillover’ effects in tropical non-reef areas;3.  Although it is indeedimportant than the regional MPAnetwork be ‘biologically’representative and thusconserves species, ecosystemsand important ecologicalprocesses, all participantsunderlined the importance ofsocial and economic aspects ofMPA management, particularlytheir role in maintainingsustainable fisheries. Indeed,many, if not most, coastalcommunities throughout theregion derive their livelihoodsfrom fishing. As such it is essentialthat MPA performance indicesand any potential plan for newMPA-implementation includesocio-economic valuations;4.  There is a disparity inexperience and capacity at thescale of the region. Participantstherefore stressed the importanceof exchange programmesbetween individual countries and/or MPAs;5.  In the development ofits own information system,RAMPAO needs to capitalise onexisting efforts and prioritiseinformation collection; and6.  It is vital that MPAscontribute to conservation as wellas reinforce cultural and socialvalues.Overall, the workshop wassuccessful in achieving what it hadset out to accomplish: (i) gettingparticipants to agree on a list ofperformance indicators for aregional MPA network; and (ii)laying out clear terms of referenceParticipants at the workshop came from the RAMPAOSecretariat’s seven member countries and includedindividuals from diverse backgrounds and with a wide rangeof expertise.It waswonderfulto witnessthe highlevel ofmotivationexpressedby allparticipantsMPAs - Continued from page 1Continued on page 3 - MPAsPage 3 Sea Around Us – July/August 2008for the development of aRAMPAO information system. Itis now critical for RAMPAO tofeed on the momentumgenerated at the workshop andstart implementing activitieshighlighted as crucial ‘next steps’.On a personal note, this trip wasalso of sentimental value to me(the first author). I spent eight ofmy formative childhood years inSénégal, but had not been backsince 1989, when we had to leavethe country due to violent civilunrest at the time. From themoment I stepped ontoSénégalese soil, it felt like I wascoming home; and althoughDakar has changed so much sincemy growing up there, I foundmyself still able to easily navigatethe streets and find my way back tomy old house – a lovely feeling!Footnotes1 Made possible with technicalsupport provided by FIBA (theInternational Foundation of theBanc d’Arguin - FondationInternationale du Banc d’Arguin)and financial assistance provided bythe MAVA and Oakfoundations.MPAs - Continued from page 2Reef fisheries and reaching outby Jennifer JacquetThe Sea Around Us Projectsent three members to the11th International CoralReefs Symposium (ICRS) in Ft.Lauderdale, Florida, where morethan 3000 scientists gathered todiscuss the science and fate ofcoral reefs.  As one suspect, thenews was grim - one scientistdescribed corals as the livingdead - the zombies of the sea.In his keynote address, DanielPauly confirmed the same is alsotrue for many species of coralreef fishes. Reef fishes conform tothe general trend of fishing downmarine food webs, due to humanoverpopulation and overlyefficient fishing gears now usedin many tropical nations.  He alsopointed out that while manysocial scientists studying fisheriesmight observe such trends, theseobservations often go unnoticedor unrecorded - to thedisadvantage of managersseeking information for data-poorfisheries.  Daniel highlightedsome of the results of the SeaAround Us project’s catchreconstructions in the tropics,some changes in fish distributionswe can expect to see as a resultof climate change, and the needfor a faster pace in the creation ofmarine protected areas (MPAs).Following Daniel’s address, DirkZeller and I both presented onunderreporting and catchreconstructions for a handful oftropical nations in the sectionon reef-associated fisheries.Despite the number ofpresentations outlining the illfate of coral reefs and theirfisheries, the news at ICRS wasnot all bad, particularly if onetakes a historical perspective ofcoral reef scientists.  Given thatthis was my first coral reefconference, my baseline wasthat week. But scientists such asDaniel Pauly, Dirk Zeller, andJeremy Jackson from theScripps Institution ofOceanography, all of whomhave attended ICRS fordecades, noticed a real shift invalues in the scientists. Not toolong ago, the majority of ICRSattendees were disinclinedtoward political activism andmedia attention. This year, therewas resounding support forpolicy action, media awarenessfor reefs, and to formsomething akin to the Union ofConcerned Scientists (whounified for climate change) forcoral reefs. After applauding theefforts of Greenpeace in herkeynote address, one scientistadded: “I’m ready! You can chainme to an Acropora.”The Sea Around Us project membersalso showed commitment to mediaoutreach as part of a panel ofspeakers that also included Hawaii-based scientist Alan Friedlander.Hosted by the CommunicationPartnership for Science and the Sea(COMPASS), we were each givenfour minutes to convey ourperspective on underreporting coralreef fisheries catches to the roomfull of journalists. Daniel describedthe phenomenon of studying coralreefs while ignoring fisheries assimilar to studying a butterfly in acornfield. The butterfly is indeedbeautiful and of scientificimportance but its future dependson its ecosystem, which has beenseverely altered.  Likewise, in thecase of coral reefs, reef-associatedfisheries cannot be ignored. Dirkdescribed results from severalcountries in the South Pacific,including the dramatic results inAmerican Samoa, where reportedcatches for the FAO period were1525 metric tonnes, but catchreconstructions resulted in anestimated annual catch of 25,380tonnes. I reported my findings fromreconstruction small-scale fisheriescatches in Mozambique andTanzania, where foreign fishingboats compete with local fishers forthe same fish resources.  I describedthe licensing of European shrimpContinued on page 4 - ICRSThis year,there wasresoundingsupportfor policyaction[and]mediaawarenessfor reefsPage 4Sea Around Us – July/August 2008trawlers in East African waters asthe antithesis of the Robin Hoodparable.  Rather than stealingfrom the rich to give to the poor,these agreements facilitatestealing seafood from the poor togive to the rich.The fact that several news outlets,including Nature, The L.A. Times,The Guardian and The Telegraphreported on the problem ofunderreported fish catches istestament to the importance ofthe findings.  Equally important,the news coverage shows thevalue of good communicationsand the effectiveness of theCOMPASS group in arranging theevent.Overall, our time in Ft.Lauderdale was well spent. Themedia outreach and talks werewithout incident, save one. Ibrought a life-size cardboardcutout of Senator Barack ObamaICRS - Continued from page 3Recent publicationswith me and, just before I was topresent, he was carted away.  I ranafter him and his apprehenders andwas told that the conferenceorganizers had received complaintsabout him being in the room.Although I made assurances thatthe cardboard Senator Obamawould not say anything, the powersthat be insisted he was folded upand stowed away.  Coral reefs,scientists, concern for coralreefs or not,  Florida is stillFlorida.Alder, J.A., B. Campbell, V. Karpouzi, K. Kaschner and D. Pauly. 2008. Forage Fish: From Ecosystems to Markets. Annual Review ofEnvironment and Resources 33:153-166.Arbarch-Leloup, F., N. Desroy, P. Le Mao, D. Pauly and O. Le Pape. 2008. Interactions between a natural food web, shellfish farmingand exotic species: the case of the Bay of Mont Saint Michel (France). Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 76: 111-120.Bhathal, B. and D. Pauly. 2008. ‘Fishing down marine food webs’ and spatial expansion of coastal fisheries in India, 1950-2000.Fisheries Research 91: 26-34.Cheung, W. W.L., C. Close, V. Lam, R. Watson and D. Pauly. 2008. Application of macroecological theory to predict effects of climatechange on global fisheries potential. Marine Ecology Progress Series 365: 187-193.Freire, K., V. Christensen and D. Pauly. 2008. Description of the East Brazil Large Marine Ecosystem using a trophic model. ScientiaMarina 72(2):  477-491.Gascuel, D., L. Morissette, M.L.D. Palomares and V. Christensen. 2008. Trophic flow kinetics in marine ecosystems: toward atheoretical approach to ecosystem functioning. Ecological Modelling 217:33-47.Guénette, S, V. Christensen and D. Pauly. 2008. Trophic modeling of the Peruvian upwelling ecosystem: towards reconciliation ofmultiple datasets. Progress in Oceanography (http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2008.10.005).Halpern,B.S., Kappel,C.V., Micheli,F., Selkoe,K.A., D’Agrosa,C., Bruno,J.,  Casey,K., Ebert, C., Fox,HE., Fujita.R., Heinemann,D., Lenihan,H.S.,Madin,E.M.P., Perry,M., Selig,E.,  Spalding,M., Steneck,R., Walbridge,S., Watson, R. 2008. Southern ocean not so pristine andDiminishing sea life. (Commentary Letters) Science 321: 1443-1444.Halpern,B.S., Walbridge,S., Selkoe,K.A., Kappel,C.V., Micheli,F.,D’Agrosa,C., Bruno,J., Casey,K., Ebert, C., Fox,HE., Fujita.R., Heinemann,D.,Lenihan,H.S., Madin,E.M.P., Perry,M., Selig,E., Spalding,M., Steneck,R., Watson, R. 2008. Mapping the impact of human threats toglobal marine ecosystems. Science 319: 948-952.Jacquet, J. and D. Pauly. 2008. Trade secrets: renaming and mislabeling of seafood. Marine Policy 32: 309-318.Jacquet, J. and D. Pauly. Funding Priorities: Big Barriers to Small-scale Fisheries. Conservation Biology 22(4): 832-835.Pauly, D. 2008. Agreeing with Daniel Bromley. Maritime Studies (MAST) 6(2): 27-28.Pauly, D. 2008. Global fisheries: a brief review. Journal of Biological Research-Thessaloniki 9: 3-9.Pauly, D. and K.I. Stergiou. 2008. Re-interpretation of ‘influence weight’ as a citation-based Index of New Knowledge (INK). Ethics inScience and Environmental Politics 8: 1-4.Pauly, D., W. Graham, S. Libralato, L. Morissette and M.L.D. Palomares. 2008. Jellyfish in ecosystems, online databases and ecosystemmodels. Hydrobiologia [Online publication].Selkoe,K.A., Kappel,C.V., Halpern,B.S., Micheli,F., D’Agrosa,C., Bruno,J.,  Casey,K., Ebert, C., Fox,HE., Fujita.R., Heinemann,D., Lenihan,H.S.,Madin,E.M.P., Perry,M., Selig,E.,  Spalding,M., Steneck,R., Walbridge,S., Watson, R. 2008. Response to Comment on “A Global Map ofHuman Impact”. (Technical Comment) Science 321: 1446cSrinivasan,U.T., Carey,S.P., Hallstein,E., Higgins,P.A.T., Kerr,A.C., Koteen,L.E., Smith,A.B., Watson, R., Harte,J. and Norgaard,R.B. 2008. TheDistribution of Ecological Impacts from Human Activities over 1961-2000 and the Debt of Nations. Proceedings of theNational Academy of Science 105: 1768-1773.Sumaila, U. R., L. Teh, R. Watson, P. Tyedmers and D. Pauly. 2008. Fuel price increase, subsidies, overcapacity, and resourcesustainability.  ICES Journal of Marine Science 65: 832-840.Wabnitz C.C.C., S. Andréfouët, D. Torres-Pulliza, F. Müller-Karger and P. Kramer. 2008. Regional-scale seagrass habitat mapping in theWider Caribbean region using Landsat sensors: applications to conservation and ecology. Remote Sensing of Environment112 (8): 3455-3467Walters, C., S.J.D. Martell,  V. Christensen and B. Mahmoudi. 2008. An Ecosim model for exploring ecosystem management optionsfor the Gulf of Mexico: implications of including multistanza life history models for policy predictions. Bulletin of MarineScience 83(1): 251-271.Walters, CJ, R. Hilborn, V. Christensen. 2008. Surplus production dynamics in declining and recovering fish populations. CanadianJournal of Fisheries and Aquatic Research 65:2536-2551.


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