Mesoamerican Reef Fund (MAR Fund)

To inspire innovative, transnational solutions to critical Mesoamerican reef issues through providing meaningful, long-term financial support and trustworthy reef management advice so that future generations can enjoy and benefit from a thriving reef.
Mar 19, 2014

MAR Regional lionfish meeting

As the invasion of lionfish raises among Coastal and Marine Protected Areas of the Mesoamerican Reef Region, a meeting to start with the development of a MAR lionfish control strategy is being organized.

Authorities from the four countries of the region and the international cooperation are planning to gather a well-selected group of experts in lionfish to share experiences and to prepare the basics for a MAR strategy to control this invasive species.  

Based on the Caribbean Strategy for the control of lionfish, the experts will work for two days to develop a document that, after been discussed and completed with feedback from other key actors of the region, will be finished and will hopefully become a regional strategy.

The meeting will end with a lionfish tasting prepared for an open public, in which information about the biology and ecology of lionfish.  A talk regarding why the consumption of lionfish is an effective control tool will also be presented.

We will definetly let you know how this regional meeting goes and what were its results.

Dec 11, 2013

Community fisheries recovery sites in Sarstun

Scuba diving certified fishers
Scuba diving certified fishers

The first initiative of fisheries recovery sites in the Río Sarstún Multiple Use Area in Guatemala has had a very good acceptance from the fishers, authorities and private sector. It also has reached important previous results.

A research protocol to establish the baseline of the proposed fisheries recovery sites was designed and will shortly be implemented by FUNDAECO (the NGO that co-administrates the protected area) jointly with the fishers and authorities

Also, with the support of Water Quest dive shop, seven fishers were trained and certified in scuba diving.  After this training, the first workshop on biological monitoring techniques was held and the seven certified fishers participated.  It is expected that, after the project concludes, they will continue with the monitoring of their fishing resources.

A recognition visit was made to potential fisheries recovery sites within the PA and prioritize these according to their current ecological status.
We are also supporting a RARE initiative that FUNDAECO began in the King Fish reef siteThis is a three coral reef patches area outside the PA. A technical study on the biologica relevance was previously developed and submited to the Research Department of the Fisheries Authority. As the Research Department has approved the technical study, we will also support the next phase: the follow-up meetings with the Legal Department of the Fisheries Authority.
We look forward to the final results of this project.  We are certain these will be vey interesting and will be sure to share them with you.  After all, without your support, this wouldn't be happening!
Best,
The MAR Fund Team



Dec 11, 2013

Lionfish cook off in Guatemalan restaurant

Fishers and authorities jointly catching lionfish
Fishers and authorities jointly catching lionfish

After the success reached by the lion fish cook off during the National Food Fair in September, fishermen from Quetzalito, a small fishing village from the Guatemalan Caribbean, with the support of DIPESCA (Fisheries Administration) and Water Quest, a dive shop committed with some groups of fishermen, brought lionfish to a prestigious Spanish restaurant in Guatemala City.  

During the event, several lionfish dishes were served to the participants, that included: NGOs, GOs, private sector and general public.  All dishes were a complete success, giving the impression that lionfish might be well accepted as a gourmet meal.

The community of Quetzalito is really looking forward to start commercializing lionfish as an economic alternative as they know they wouldn't be just earning income but collaborating with the reef ecosystem of their country. 

Now that Guatemala has joined the lionfish battle in the MAR region, a regional workshop is starting to be planned to develop a MAR strategy to face the lionfih invasion.  Individual and local measures have to be shared and expanded at a regional level.  Even when is not a warranty, It is the best way to address this issue.

We will keep you posted about this workshop and will let you know if Quetzalito becomes a lionfish supplier for Guatemala city.

Thank you very much for your support!

The MAR Fund Team

Lionfish ceviche served at the cook off
Lionfish ceviche served at the cook off

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