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Westerman K.,Omnibus Business Center | Gardner C.J.,University of Kent
Conservation Evidence | Year: 2013

Local and co-management approaches are increasingly adopted in marine conservation to increase compliance with rules, which is essential for effective management. Here, we evaluate an innovative approach to increasing compliance with community laws restricting access to permanently closed marine reserves within a locally managed marine area in southwest Madagascar. Drawing upon strong cultural bonds with ancestors and local taboos, permanent reserves were sanctified through a traditional ceremonies in which ancestral benediction was requested during reserve closures. We evaluated the effectiveness of the ceremonies in increasing respect for the rules through structured interviews with 161 fishers and local leaders from 10 villages located near established permanent reserves. Almost half of the respondents believed that respect for the rules is increased by the ceremonies. If this is reflected in actual behaviour change, it will help reduce rule infringement, enforcement costs and social conflict. At a one-off cost of approximately 500 US$ each, we believe the ceremonies provide value-for-money as a conservation intervention in the context of southwest Madagascar. Source

Humber F.,Omnibus Business Center | Humber F.,University of Exeter | Godley B.J.,University of Exeter | Broderick A.C.,University of Exeter
Diversity and Distributions | Year: 2014

Aim: We provide a global assessment of the current legal direct take of marine turtles, including the scale and species breakdown at country level, and investigate the significance of legal take to marine turtle populations within the wider context of global threats. Location: World-wide. Methods: We undertook a comprehensive review of the literature (>500 publications) and contacted over 150 in-country experts to collate data for countries that permit the legal take of marine turtles (as of 1 January 2013). Current annual take for each country and species was estimated, and estimates were generated for the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. Results: Currently, 42 countries and territories permit direct take of turtles and collectively take in excess of 42,000turtles per year, the majority of which (>80%) are green turtles Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus 1758). Ten countries account for more than 90% of legal take each year with Papua New Guinea (36.1%) and Nicaragua (22.3%) accounting for more than half of the total global take. Since 1980, we estimate that more than 2million turtles have been legally taken in these countries, with current levels <60% of those in the 1980s. Main conclusions: Our results provide the most comprehensive global synthesis of the legal take of turtles in recent years and suggest that legal take has the potential to be a driver of marine turtle population dynamics, comparable to mortality estimates through recorded bycatch. However, it is likely that illegal take, along with bycatch, is significantly under-recorded and far greater than the total level of directed legal take. This hampers the ability to assess the relative impacts of these threats to marine turtles. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd205 May 2014 10.1111/ddi.12183 Biodiversity Research Biodiversity Research © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Source

Gardner C.J.,University of Canterbury | Latham J.E.,Independent Researcher | Rocliffe S.,Omnibus Business Center
Marine Policy | Year: 2016

Fisheries learning exchanges (FLEs) bring together fisher communities to exchange knowledge and experiences, with the goal of building social capital and disseminating management techniques. In 2015 two groups of octopus fishers from Bahia de los Angeles, Mexico and Sarodrano, Madagascar travelled to Andavadoaka, southwest Madagascar to learn about the temporary fishing closures for octopus used in the region. Octopus fisheries in Madagascar and Mexico differ in several respects, particularly harvesting techniques. The FLE was qualitatively evaluated through participant observation and semi-structured key informant (KI) interviews. Thirty before-and-after interviews were carried out with 16 KIs including visitors, hosts and organisers. Informants suggested that holding the FLE at the same time as the closure openings allowed for learning benefits but carried an important opportunity cost for organisers and host participants, and that shortcomings of planning and translation capacity limited learning opportunities. Several KIs were concerned about the applicability of the Malagasy management model to the Mexican context concerned, and the FLE may have had unforeseen consequences since Malagasy fishers were excited to learn a new fishing method (trapping) from the visitors: if effective, trapping could negatively impact Malagasy octopus stocks. The exchange of knowledge in the FLE was primarily one-way, from host to visitor, and most organisers did not view themselves as participants. Recommendations to improve the effectiveness of future FLEs include: (i) improving facilitation and translation capacity to promote dialogue, (ii) focusing on key messages, (iii) selecting appropriate participants and (iv) recruiting a specialist to organise and lead exchanges. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Andriamalala G.,Omnibus Business Center | Peabody S.,Omnibus Business Center | Gardner C.J.,University of Kent | Westerman K.,Omnibus Business Center
Conservation Evidence | Year: 2013

From April 2009 to November 2010, a social marketing campaign was designed and implemented in southwest Madagascar to encourage fishers to give up destructive fishing methods and to improve the awareness and enforcement of local laws (dina). The campaign, which targeted local leaders and fishers, was designed using results from formal and informal social surveys and focused on removing locally perceived barriers to behaviour change. In this paper, we describe the campaign from design to implementation, and evaluate its effects through surveys of 500 fishers and local leaders, and preliminary observational data on dina enforcement and use of destructive fishing techniques. Results after one year showed improved knowledge and positive attitudes about dina among leaders and fishers, moderate increases in the enforcement of dina, and moderate decreases in the use of destructive fishing methods. Our findings demonstrate the power and suitability of social marketing as a tool for fostering sustainable behaviour in traditional fishing communities, when combined with good governance and enforcement strategies. Source

Ateweberhan M.,Omnibus Business Center | Ateweberhan M.,University of Warwick | Rougier A.,Omnibus Business Center | Rakotomahazo C.,Omnibus Business Center
Journal of Applied Phycology | Year: 2015

A monitoring programme was established in order to support community-based seaweed farming in south-west Madagascar by providing scientific information on the effects of physico-chemical and health factors influencing the growth of Kappaphycus alvarezii (cottonii). Six aquaculture site configurations were studied. These consisted of high and low flow locations, off-bottom and long-line farming techniques and different benthic/substrate types. At each site, a number of growth and health variables were monitored monthly between January 2012 and March 2013 on 30 randomly selected thalli. Variables included thallus-level growth, intensity of epiphyte and disease infection, intensity of fish and sea urchin grazing and cover of pest seaweed and sediment. The following key environmental variables were also monitored at the site level: water temperature, irradiance, salinity, water depth, wave action, pH and oxygen content. Overall average relative growth rate of K. alvarezii in the region was 4.5 ± 0.06 % day−1 and varied by site and season. Generally, growth rate was higher during the winter season (April–August, 5.04 ± 0.31 % day−1) than in the summer (3.90 ± 0.28 % day−1). The long-line farming technique provided higher growth (5.46 ± 0.09 % day−1) than the off-bottom technique (3.99 ± 0.07 % day−1). Thallus-level analysis showed that fish grazing, epiphyte cover, sediment cover and disease had significant negative correlations with growth, and the four variables were positively correlated. Site-level analysis on the effects of physico-chemical and health factors showed that sedimentation, daily maximum of water temperature and variability, and interactions between these factors were the main determinants of growth. Growth was lower at high sedimentation levels and higher values of maximum temperature and temperature variation. Our findings highlight that farming should focus mainly in the cold season and long-line technique in order to limit the major ecological constraints encountered and maintain growth and production at sustainable levels. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. Source

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