MEGAFAUNA: dynamics of marine species

MEGAFAUNA: dynamics of marine species

Co-created by researchers (UK and Cape Verde) and national NGOs, this project aims to provide a first inventory and description of the dynamics of marine megafauna communities in places of high biodiversity value on the islands of São Vicente, Santa Luzia, Boa Vista and Salt.

These places, insufficiently protected and threatened by the erosion of biodiversity and the overexploitation of resources, are home to large stocks of fish, elasmobranchs, sea turtles and cetaceans. However, this megafauna is still poorly known and there are few inventories, mainly due to difficult access.

This project fills these gaps and aims to improve our knowledge, following the evolution of the dynamics of the communities of this megafauna, which evolve over time in relation to abiotic factors (type of habitat, temperature, chlorophyll, wind and currents) and biotics.

All this information is essential to determine the baseline status of areas of high biodiversity value and to initiate the creation of Marine Protected Areas co-managed by local communities, NGOs and authorities or to reinforce the protection of already established areas.

Biosfera, participates in programmed activities on the islands of Santa Luzia and São Vicente:

  • Strengthening of personnel skills in flying aircraft and data analysis (video recordings, statistics, mapping);
  • Conducting weekly overflight campaigns (video recordings and photographs) of the shorelines monitored to determine whether internationally protected species are in fact using marine protected areas;
  • Organization of public awareness campaigns and thematic seminars.

The transfer of knowledge from this project will provide Cape Verde with an essential toolbox to control its development and protect its marine biodiversity.

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