Over the past decade and a half, tourism in the Galapagos Islands has boomed: from 40,000 visitors in 1990 to 140,000 in 2006. This has had a domino effect on the islands, according to a draft report by the Charles Darwin Foundation, soon to be released. Rising tourism has promoted the growth of local businesses and, in turn, increased immigration - doubling the islands' human population over the same period.
Canada's offshore trawling industry for shrimp and groundfish has instituted a voluntary closure to protect coldwater corals off the coast of Baffin Island and the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, on the nation's Atlantic coast. The 12,500-km2 coral protection zone will help prevent coral species from being taken as bycatch in trawl gear. Coral species in the region, including Primnoa resedaeformis and Paragoria arborea, exist hundreds of meters below the surface and can live to be centuries old.
Last month, MPA News asked resource planners for their views on an initiative to create a network of MPAs off the coast of the US state of California. The initiative completed its first phase in April, with designation of 29 MPAs along the state's central coast (MPA News 8:10). Its second phase, covering the north central coast, was launched this past February, and phases for the north and south coasts will follow in coming years.
Two MPAs located nearly 5000 km apart have formed a "sister sanctuary" arrangement to coordinate management of a shared population of humpback whales. The Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, off the northeast coast of the US, and the Marine Mammal Sanctuary of the Dominican Republic established the partnership in December 2006 to assist humpback whale recovery in the north Atlantic.
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"MPA Tip" is a recurring feature in MPA News that presents advice on planning and management gathered from various publications on protected areas. The purpose is two-fold: to provide useful guidance to practitioners, and to serve as a reminder of valuable literature in the MPA field.
This edition of MPA News marks the start of our ninth year of publication, with subscribers now in 113 countries. The staff and editorial board look forward to continuing to serve MPA practitioners worldwide. Please keep us informed of your MPA's latest efforts, whether new, different, or challenging (mpanews [at] u.washington.edu). We value hearing from our readers, and want to help you share your experience and knowledge with peers.
In September 2007, the team that produces MPA News will launch a new publication on ecosystem-based management (EBM) of coastal and marine resources. The publication will serve EBM practitioners in the same way MPA News serves the global MPA field: providing news, analysis, scientific developments, and advice gathered from experts around the world.
The initiative to create a network of MPAs off the coast of the US state of California completed its first phase in April, with final designation of 29 MPAs along the state's central coast (MPA News 8:10). There are more phases to come. The second one, addressing the north central coast, was launched this past February; the north coast and south coast phases will follow in coming years.
Editor's note: Jeff Ardron is scientific advisor on MPAs for the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, and Northeast Atlantic regional coordinator for the Marine Program of the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA-Marine). He is also vice-president of the Pacific Marine Analysis and Research Association (PacMARA).
This essay reflects Ardron's personal views. It does not reflect the views of the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, WCPA-Marine, or PacMARA.
By Jeff Ardron