CCC Volunteers Help to Create the First Large-Scale MPA in Cambodia!

cache_2472263760.JPGPress Release

Coral Cay Conservation‘s (CCC) main story today is dedicated to all of the staff and volunteers who joined CCC on our Cambodia Site on Koh Rong. It has been a long journey (as these things always are) but we are very happy to announce that the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) have declared a 405 km2 area within the Koh Rong and Koh Rong Sanloem regions in Cambodia, as the country’s first large scale Marine Fisheries Management Area (MFMA)!

CCC were based in the Koh Rong archipelago from 2010 – 2014 at the invitation of the Fisheries Administration (FiA), and worked closely with the FiA, MAFF, MCC, the Song Saa Foundation, and last but by no means least our in country partners Fauna and Flora International. The data collected by CCC volunteers was used to make recommendations as to where best to place the MFMA. The globally recognised Reef Check survey method was used to quantify the abundance, diversity and composition of selected ‑fishes, invertebrates and benthic species, and CCC applied an approach to highlight particular areas of conservation interest.

cache_2472263767.jpgThe successful creation of the MFMA is testament to the culmination of a consultation process between stakeholders, conservation organisations, government agencies and the local community. This process has taken into consideration the importance of protecting the future of the marine life of the Koh Rong Archipelago, whilst balancing this with the needs of the local communities – people who rely on the ocean for food and economic security. This balance has been achieved through the implementation of an effective but sympathetic ‘zonation scheme’ which divides the MFMA into areas of different usage – community fishing, recreational, no-take, conservation and multi use, whilst outlawing destructive fishing methods throughout the entire MFMA.

We can’t wait to see the positive impact that the MFMA will have on Cambodia’s waters and feel so proud that we were able to assist in this venture. If you would like to read more about the MFMA check out the full story on our Blog. All of CCC’s work is compiled into scientific reports so if you are interested in reading more about the research and analysis that went into making our MFMA recommendations check out the Cambodia section on the Reports page.

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