Belize takes a major step to protect its coral reefs

WCS conservationists help Belize develop a management program to restore the health of both fisheries and the coral reef ecosystems at its Glover’s Reef and Port Honduras Marine Reserves.

As more and more fishermen ply a shrinking number of fish from the waters of Belize, the country’s Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries has taken a major step to save its coral reefs from further loss. On July 1, Belize launched a managed access program aimed at addressing overfishing at two pilot sites, the Glover’s Reef Marine Reserve (GRMR) and the Port Honduras Marine Reserve (PHMR). The program will help safeguard these critical nursery and feeding grounds for sea turtles, sharks and rays, moray eels and numerous other tropical fish species.

WCS joined forces with the Belize Fisheries Department, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the Toledo Institute of Development and Environment—the co-manager of PHMR—to develop the program. Over the past two years, the partners have held multiple consultations with fishermen, and collaborated with them on the design.

Read the full story here: Netting change for Fisheries in Belize

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