In recognition of the importance of this signing of the fisheries co-management agreement as a first step towards conservation of fishing resources and marine ecosystems, authorities from the Council of Protected Areas (CONAP), the Fisheries Department (DIPESCA) and the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARN) organized an official ceremony for the delivery of the signed agreement on September 18.
These are the first fisheries recovery areas (no take zones) established in Guatemala, and the first co-management agreement signed between authorities and fishermen. Through this experience, 345 ha (853 acres) are being protected.
CONAP and Fundacion Mario Dary (FUNDARY), an NGO supporting the fishermen in the zone, have been participants in this process since the beginning. As part of the supportive activities, they started a training process on management of coastal marine protected areas with the fishermen. Among the topics that have been covered to date are: Communication techniques and participatory planning of marine protected areas, and management of marine protected areas.
FUNDARY has also evaluated the biological indicators in one of the fisheries recovery areas and biomass in the three established areas. The estimations of biomass among the three fisheries recovery sites vary from 0.001 g/cm2 in two sites to 6 g/cm2 in the third one.
Two meetings have been held with the three fishing communities of Bahía La Graciosa to design an action plan for the co-management area and the three fisheries recovery sites.
The training process began with the participation of the fishing communities of Santa Isabel, Punta Gruesa and La Graciosa.
We are very excited that our efforts and your support are gathering together organizations to keep supporting the fishing communities who have just started their new important role as co-managers.
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