The development of a co-management plan, designed by fishers, to minimise the impact of the Seychelles artisanal fishery on threatened species. [Mahé Plateau, Seychelles]

Organization : Green Islands Foundation (GIF)

Project Period
: July 2016 – December 2018
Project Site
: 3,900,000 ha
Grant Amount
: US$88,000
: US$121,872

Executive Summary :

The objective of this project is to reduce the Seychelles artisanal fishery’s impact (catch, by-catch and disturbance) on globally threatened species (IUCN classifications: VU, EN, CR). The project will develop a baseline of threatened species occurrence in the artisanal fishery through fisher interviews and consultation, literature review and an intensive 12-month survey of artisanal catch. The project will support fishers in the identification and development of pragmatic management measures to reduce artisanal fishing pressure on threatened species - (e.g. catch release, only landing mature individuals, reduce effort on critical habitats, gear modification etc…). These measures will be developed into the project’s primary output of an artisanal fishery management plan for threatened species, regulated as a co-management plan under the 2014 Fisheries Act. Secondary outputs will include: a threatened species database and baseline of occurrence in artisanal fishery catch, a threatened species identification guide and related technical and education materials, a protocol and format for threatened species catch monitoring with fishery technicians and researchers trained in their use. The project will therefore: provide a pragmatic, stakeholder-led and regulated basis to minimise fishery impact upon threatened species, train technicians to monitor future threatened species catch and thereby enable its adaptive management. This in turn will result in improved site-level conservation status of various threatened species and contribute to a more diverse, resilient and productive marine ecosystem on the Mahé plateau; as an example of a Socio-Ecological Production Seascape.

Main threatened species according to IUCN Red List that may be influenced by the project :

  • Napoleon/humphead wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus)
  • Scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini)
  • Great hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran)
  • Ornate eagle ray (Aetomylaeus vespertilio)