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Gardner C.J.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Gardner C.J.,University of Kent
International Journal of Primatology | Year: 2016

Despite an increasing recognition of the ecosystem services provided by mangroves, we know little about their role in maintaining terrestrial biodiversity, including primates. Madagascar’s lemurs are a top global conservation priority, with 94 % of species threatened with extinction, but records of their occurrence in mangroves are scarce. I used a mixed-methods approach to collect published and unpublished observations of lemurs in mangroves: I carried out a systematic literature search and supplemented this with a targeted information request to 1243 researchers, conservation and tourism professionals, and others who may have visited mangroves in Madagascar. I found references to, or observations of, at least 23 species in 5 families using mangroves, representing >20% of lemur species and >50% of species whose distributions include mangrove areas. Lemurs used mangroves for foraging, sleeping, and traveling between terrestrial forest patches, and some were observed as much as 3 km from the nearest permanently dry land. However, most records were anecdotal and thus tell us little about lemur ecology in this habitat. Mangroves are more widely used by lemurs than has previously been recognized and merit greater attention from primate researchers and conservationists in Madagascar. © 2016 The Author(s)

Rocliffe S.,University of York | Peabody S.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Samoilys M.,CORDIO East Africa | Hawkins J.P.,University of York
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

In the Western Indian Ocean (WIO), local communities are increasingly assuming responsibility for inshore marine resources either on their own or through collaborative management arrangements with governments or non-state actors. In this paper, we trace the evolution and expansion of community management in the WIO and present the first ever inventory and assessment of the region's locally managed marine areas (LMMAs). We compare the key attributes of these areas to those under government stewardship and assess their relative contributions to progress towards the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) target of 10% of marine and coastal ecological regions to be effectively conserved by 2020. We also explore the legal frameworks that underpin locally managed marine initiatives in Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique and Tanzania to assess the potential for future expansion. A principal finding is that whilst LMMAs protect more than 11,000 square kilometres of marine resource in the WIO, they are hampered by underdeveloped local and national legal structures and enforcement mechanisms. In our recommendations to improve local management, we suggest establishing a network of LMMA practitioners in the WIO region to share experiences and best practice. © 2014 Rocliffe et al.

In order to reduce conflict between national laws and local customs and social norms (known as dina), the government of Madagascar has progressively decentralised the governance of natural resources to local levels. Rules regarding resource use within contractual management transfers and co-managed protected areas are defined within dina, which can be legally recognised. In this paper we describe and critically analyse the establishment and enforcement procedures of a dina created to govern resource use within Velondriake, a community-managed marine protected area in southwestern Madagascar. The dina was developed by community members and ratified in a court of law to become legally binding. It has hierarchical enforcement procedures, starting at the village level but with recourse to higher levels should local enforcement fail. We discuss several problems with the dina creation and its enforcement procedures, as well as proposed solutions; these include overcoming social cohesion (fihavanana), contradictions with pre-existing national law, and applying the dina against migrants. We conclude by reviewing the use of dina elsewhere in Madagascar, and argue that dina imposed by external agencies, when not aligned with community aspirations, will result in poor compliance with the rules. Velondriake avoided such problems through a fully participatory, inclusive approach to dina creation. © Gildas Andriamalala and Charlie J. Gardner.

Oliver T.A.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Oliver T.A.,University of Hawaii at Manoa | Oleson K.L.L.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Oleson K.L.L.,University of Hawaii at Manoa | And 5 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

Overview Eight years of octopus fishery records from southwest Madagascar reveal significant positive impacts from 36 periodic closures on: (a) fishery catches and (b) village fishery income, such that (c) economic benefits from increased landings outweigh costs of foregone catch. Closures covered ~20%of a village's fished area and lasted 2-7 months. Fishery Catches from Each Closed Site Octopus landings and catch per unit effort (CPUE) significantly increased in the 30 days following a closure's reopening, relative to the 30 days before a closure (landings: +718%, p<0.0001; CPUE: +87%, p<0.0001; n = 36). Open-access control sites showed no before/ after change when they occurred independently of other management ("no ban", n = 17/36). On the other hand, open-access control sites showed modest catch increases when they extended a 6-week seasonal fishery shutdown ("ban", n = 19/36). The seasonal fishery shutdown affects the entire region, so confound all potential control sites. Fishery Income in Implementing Villages In villages implementing a closure, octopus fishery income doubled in the 30 days after a closure, relative to 30 days before (+132%, p<0.001, n = 28). Control villages not implementing a closure showed no increase in income after "no ban" closures and modest increases after "ban" closures. Villages did not show a significant decline in income during closure events. Net Economic Benefits from Each Closed Site Landings in closure sites generated more revenue than simulated landings assuming continued open-access fishing at that site (27/36 show positive net earnings; mean +$305/closure; mean +57.7% monthly). Benefits accrued faster than local fishers' time preferences during 17-27 of the 36 closures. High reported rates of illegal fishing during closures correlated with poor economic performance. Broader Co-Management We discuss the implications of our findings for broader co-management arrangements, particularly for catalyzing more comprehensive management. Copyright: © 2015 Oliver et al.

Tucker B.,University of Georgia | Tsimitamby M.,University of Toliary | Humber F.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Benbow S.,Blue Ventures Conservation | Iida T.,Research Center for Cultural Resources
Human Organization | Year: 2010

International programs for combating food insecurity including the recent FAO "How to Feed the World in 2050: Highlevel Expert Forum" promote agricultural intensification among the main solutions to global hunger. We argue here that hunting and gathering on land and at sea will often result in less food insecurity than farming. In southwestern Madagascar, questionnaire data find farmers more food insecure than neighboring forest foragers and marine foragers. Production data show that farmers produce a greater quantity of food energy, but foragers sell their goods for higher prices resulting in comparable market-valued incomes among all three subsistence modes. A stochastic model finds farming portfolios an order of magnitude more risky (lower z-scores) than foraging portfolios, except when foraging portfolios have low means. This is because farmers experience only three to five harvests per year while foragers may experience 365 harvests. As farmers await future harvests of uncertain quantity, they are more likely than foragers to depend on formal and informal credit. The stochastic model shows that diversification, mixing foraging with farming, can only reduce the risks of farming under limited conditions. We conclude that pressuring foragers to become farmers will increase rather than diminish regional food insecurity.

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