Download (3) Establishing a marine management plan with

yes no Was this document useful for you?
   Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the workof artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Document related concepts

Micronesia wikipedia , lookup

Island restoration wikipedia , lookup

Galápagos Islands wikipedia , lookup

A sustainable marine and fisheries
management plan for the Pitcairn Islands
Terence P.
Dawson ,
& Heather
1. School of the Environment, University of Dundee, DD1 4HN, UK.
2. Sea-Scope Marine Environmental Consultants, Dulverton, Somerset TA22 9PW, UK.
3. Zoological Society of London, Regent’s Park, London, NW1 4RY, UK.
The UK and Pitcairn Governments, supported by the Pitcairn Island Council, intend to develop a more sustainable livelihoods and
economic growth strategy for the Islands. Whilst tourism and fisheries currently represent the primary mainstays of the local economy,
drawing upon the natural wealth and cultural heritage of the Islands, to date these have not been fully realised. Further, given their
extremely isolated location and difficulties of access, the Pitcairn Islands’ marine habitats are one of the UKOTs least known ecosystems.
Considering these challenges, the UK Darwin Initiative has funded a project to develop local capacity for adaptive fisheries management
and to enhance tourism opportunities through cruise ships visits and on-island facilities. A recent development within the project is to
support the establishment of a Marine Protected Area, and to provide the underpinning management protocols and scientific evidencebase to ensure a sustainable future for Pitcairn’s marine resources.
Pitcairn Island
Project Rationale
Given their extremely isolated location and difficulties of access, the Pitcairn Islands’ marine habitats are one of the UKOTs least known
ecosystems. Currently, the scientific evidence for fisheries management of Pitcairn’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) remains insufficient
for responsible decision-making to ensure sustainable extraction (Irving and Dawson, 2012). Global fishing pressures on migratory
species, especially tuna and billfish, have resulted in commercial fishing fleets increasingly pressuring the Pitcairn Government to lease
their fishing rights. Further, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) has proposed that the Pitcairn community develop commercial
reef fisheries for export to neighbouring Mangareva (Gambier Islands, French Polynesia). The environmental and economic sustainability
of such proposals are unknown. Crucially, the small local community relies on fishing for food, and together with tourism, providing
income support.
The Exclusive
Economic Zone (EEZ)
of the 4 Pitcairn
Islands span a vast
area of ocean of about
836,000 km2, more
than three times the
size of the UK.
Considering these challenges with socio-political and economic pressures, our project is undertaking a number of activities designed to
facilitate informed decision-making by the Pitcairn Government for sustainable marine resource use by:
(1) underpinning the scientific evidence-base;
(2) developing local capacity for fisheries and environmental assessments;
(3) establishing a marine management plan with the Pitcairn community and UK Government for fisheries and the
proposed marine reserve;
(4) enhancing tourism opportunities; and
(5) increasing awareness of Pitcairn’s importance in meeting the UK’s biodiversity targets.
(1) Underpinning the scientific evidence-base
Level 4-5 : Apex predators
Level 3-4 : Carnivores
Level 2 : Herbivores
Following on from earlier diving surveys and a desk study (Irving and Dawson, 2012),
Baited Remote Underwater Videography (BRUV) surveys were conducted around
Pitcairn Island from May to August 2014 to assess the impact of fishing in order to
develop a sustainable fishery plan. A total of 42 BRUV deployments were carried out and
88 fish species were identified.
The extent of the Pitcairn Islands Exclusive Economic Zone
(2) Developing local capacity for fisheries management
Working with the Pitcairn fishing community and other stakeholders, the
project is helping to establish a “Pitcairn Islands Inshore Fishing and
Conservation Association” to enable the local community to manage their
marine resources through the establishment of a fish catch monitoring
program and the setting of local regulations and by-laws. Activities
include training on monitoring methods and sustainable fishing practices.
Trophic pyramid showing the structure of the fish
assemblage sampled by BRUV. These results
suggests that apex predators (sharks) and large
carnivores (groupers, snappers) have a low
abundance compared to nearby Polynesian
islands and the uninhabited islands of Ducie and
Henderson, possibly due to fishing pressure.
(3) Establishing a marine management plan with
the Pitcairn community and UK Government for
fisheries and the proposed marine reserve
On 18th March 2015, the UK Government announced “The government intends to proceed with
the designation of a Marine Protected Area (MPA) around Pitcairn” (Dawson, 2015). The project
is working with the UK and Pitcairn Governments, the Pew Charitable Trust , the Marine
Reserve Coalition (MRC) and the Pitcairn Island Council to support the establishment of the MPA
of the whole Pitcairn Islands EEZ, which would make it the largest in the world. Activities include
the revision of the Pitcairn Fisheries Ordinance and Laws.
Major challenges for the effective
conservation of the MPA will be
the surveillance and policing of
illegal, unregulated, and
unreported fishing activities from
long-line fleets of distant water
fishing nations. A combination of
satellite monitoring technology,
supported by a rapid-response
patrol vessel, which can access all
the islands, is under investigation.
‘Berried’ female lobster with her eggs.
She has been marked with a ‘v-notch’ in
the tail fin before release.
A panorama of the Fisheries training
workshop held in September 2011.
(4) Enhancing tourism opportunities
The announcement of the world’s largest marine reserve around the Pitcairn
Islands enhances the islands’ image to potential visitors. It provides an
opportunity for increased awareness of the islands and their unique tourism
experience on offer. This opportunity to highlight the islands’ biodiversity and
natural history, and the consequent increased number of visitors, represents a
realistic prospect for building a sustainable economic future for the community.
Presenting plans to the
Pitcairn Islands
Council, alongside
representatives from
Pew, National
Geographic and
RSPB, Sept. 2014
Meeting the Pitcairn
Islands Tourism
Department, Sept. 2014
(5) Increasing awareness of Pitcairn’s importance in
meeting the UK’s biodiversity targets
Existing signage and
interpretation from
Pitcairn Island
Working in partnership with the Pitcairn Islands' Tourism Department,
the Pitcairn Islands Museum, and other members of the community we
aim to enhance tourism opportunities for the Pitcairn Islands. This
includes developing the provision of a unique tourism experience
whilst emphasising the special marine biodiversity of the islands to an
increasing number of
visitors. This project is supporting the
community by enhancing the number of ‘self-guided’ activities
available and developing effective outreach and interpretive materials.
The coral reefs around Pitcairn’s four
islands have a higher proportion of live
coral than reefs elsewhere such as those
in the Caribbean (from Sala et al., 2012).
The overall aim of the project is to ensure long term protection for marine biodiversity in the Pitcairn Islands
consistent with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) although the CBD does not yet extend to the Pitcairn
Islands group. To date, in the region of 1,145 marine species (including seabirds) have been recorded from the
waters surrounding the Pitcairn Islands. The islands’ marine environment supports 38 globally threatened species,
including whales, seabirds, turtles, fish and corals – a number of which are endemic. Relating to the Convention on
the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), the project has established a monitoring program for
the largest and most charismatic of the Pitcairn species; the Humpback Whale Megaptera noveangliae, which is
listed as ‘Endangered’ in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.
Large fish thrive around Pitcairn’s four
islands, demonstrating how natural and
healthy the populations are compared with
Hawaii where fishing has removed most of
the large fish (from Sala et al., 2012).
Dawson, T.P., 2015. The UK Government agrees to create the world’s largest
marine reserve around the Pitcairn Islands, a UK Overseas Territory in the South
Pacific, Pacific Conservation Biology,
We would like to thank the UK Darwin initiative (Project no. 20-006), which is administered by the UK
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) for their financial support for this work. We
thank Darwin project members: Ana Pinto (ZSL), Henry Duffy (Imperial College London) and Tom
Letessier (ZSL/University of Western Australia) for their valuable contribution to the research and
outreach activities. Thanks also to the following who have collaborated with us on the project: Michel
Blanc (SPC), Enric Sala (National Geographic Society), Alistair Gammell, Heather Bradner and Jo Royle
(Pew Charitable Trusts Global Ocean Legacy Program), Tom Appleby (UWE), John Kelly and Elisabeth
Whitebread (RSPB). We also thank Enric Sala and National Geographic Society for permission to
reproduce two figures, and to Michele Christian (Natural Resource Division Manager, Government of
Pitcairn) and all the Pitcairn Island community for their valuable support.
Irving, R.A. and Dawson, T.P., 2012. The marine environment of the Pitcairn Islands.
A report to the Global Ocean Legacy programme, Pew Charitable Trusts.
Dundee: Dundee University Press: ISBN 9781845861612.
Sala, E., Friedlander, A., Ballesteros, E., Brown, E., Bradner, H., Caselle, Fay, J.M.
& Turchik, A., 2012. Pitcairn Islands Expedition Report. National Geographic
Society and Pew Environment Group. 99p.