Protection of the Marine ecosystem

Unimaginable biodiversity and being home to a large population of unique species has accounted for the Galapagos Archipelago as being the richest marine ecological system on earth. Whales, dolphins, sea lions are all home to the Galapagos Islands. It is also an area where large groups of sharks can still be seen.

The coastline is the main source for bio-diversity on the Islands but unfortunately it has degraded to an alarming level. Progress has been made over the past few years, biological and fisheries data have become more available and the tracking capacity of the local government improved. However, the Galapagos Marine Reserve (GMR) faces financial shortage to effectively protect the area.

The largest threat to sharks in this area is illegal fining by local and foreign vessels. Since 1998 more than 20.000 fins have been confiscated by the GMR wardens.

Goal of the project:

To support the management of the Galapagos Marine Reserve in lawfully protecting the reserve by ensuring park wardens are equipped appropriately. Coral Reef Care has invested in equipment for the marine park such as night vision binoculars, satellite phones, camping gear, digital cameras, radio-stations, etc. Also the maintenance of the equipment and the boats and education of snifferdogs that are used to detect sharkfins at ports were part of the investment of CRC. This way we want to stop illegal fishing not only of sharks but of tuna and sea cucumber which are also endangered in this area.

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