Adaptive management for resilient MPA network design

Cruising the reefs of Solevu
August 20, 2011
2nd Fiji Conservation Science Forum
September 7, 2011

Efforts to develop management strategies that can mitigate the impacts of global environmental and climate change are urgently needed but examples of their application to date are rare. WCS Fiji is leading efforts to developing indicators of coral reef resilience to climate impacts which can be used to prioritise locations for management. We have collected data on reef fish assemblages, coral population structure, coral recruitment, benthic cover and complexity from coral reef habitats within managed (Kubulau District) and unmanaged fishing grounds (Solevu, Nadi, Wainunu, Wailevu districts). We are combining these data with reef habitat classifications and predictions of reef fish assemblage characteristics to identify sites with naturally high resilience and those that can be improved by management. WCS Fiji will then consult with stakeholders in Kubulau District to discuss options for adapting their existing marine protected area (MPA) to improve reef resilience. We will also work with the communities from Bua and Cakaudrove provinces to design new resilient MPA networks.

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