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Combine science and education for better conservation actions: an example in Nicaragua

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Abstract

The cetacean conservation project of Nicaragua is a science-based conservation project that aims to combine scientific research and education activities to make conservation actions effective in collaboration with decision makers.
COMBINE SCIENCE AND EDUCATION FOR BETTER CONSERVATION
ACTIONS: AN EXAMPLE IN NICARAGUA
Joëlle De Weerdt
6 December 2018, Ugent, OORI
Oceans of Opportunities, Rivers of Ideas
Today
Volunteering
@SWF
Master in Biology:
@VUB
Volunteering
@Cetamada
Volunteering
@Morigenos
Internship
@France
Internship
@Morigenos
Internship
@Whales of
Guerrero
Wood biologist @Tervuren
Start Cetacean Conservation
in Nicaragua with ELI-S
SCIENCE
Study the different
cetacean species in
Nicaragua
1
EDUCATION
Raise awareness amongst
children and local
communities
2
CONSERVATION
Work with local decision
makers and the
government
3
SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH
Distribution
& Abundance
Behaviour
Acoustics Photo-
identification
EDUCATION PROGRAM
Meetings & Events
Environmental
science classes
Information
sessions fishermen
YES NO
Do
you know ELI-S? 61 39
Do
you think that scientific research and education activities are necessary? 100 0
Are
you happy with the actions lead by ELI-S? 97 3
Would
you like to participate to an information session? 100 0
Would
you like to get trained on sustainable whale watching activities ? 94 6
Do
you know the difference between a marine mammal and a fish? 42 58
Do
you know species of whales or dolphins occuring here ? 67 33
Would
you like to be part of the observation network created by ELI-S? 100 0
Do
you think tourism is important for your future ? 100 0
*If
there is an alternative to bomb fishing, would you stop this activity ? 100 0
CONSERVATION
*PR only
YES NO
Do
you know ELI-S? 61 39
Do
you think that scientific research and education activities are necessary? 100 0
Are
you happy with the actions lead by ELI-S? 97 3
Would
you like to participate to an information session? 100 0
Would
you like to get trained on sustainable whale watching activities ? 94 6
Do
you know the difference between a marine mammal and a fish? 42 58
Do
you know species of whales or dolphins occuring here ? 67 33
Would
you like to be part of the observation network created by ELI-S? 100 0
Do
you think tourism is important for your future ? 100 0
*If
there is an alternative to bomb fishing, would you stop this activity ? 100 0
FISHERMEN REACTED POSITIVELY
Fishermen are important actors:
- Offers whale watching tours
- Possible collisions and invasive behaviors (cf. calves)
- Bycatch / Impact of bombs
Conclusion
Science is
- Important as basis for both decision makers
- Essential to be combined with education activities
to make conservation actions effective
Acknowledgements
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ELI-Scientific
Research assistants
2016 -2018
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