Options for Managing Your Tabu Area Front Page
Contents • INTRODUCTION Page 3 • SECTION 1: WHAT IS A TABU AREA? Page 4 • SECTION 2: TABU AREAS:INSIDE & OUT Page 5 • SECTION 3:HOW TO GET THE BENEFITS OF TABU AREAS? Page 6 • SECTION 4: MANAGEMENT OPTIONS Page 8 • GUIDELINES Page 9 • ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT Page 10 • SPECIES INFORMATION
1. What is a Tabu Area? • A tabu area is an area of your reef which has been declared ‘tabu’ area by your qoliqoli members. Fishing is completely banned in some. Fishing is seasonal and tightly controlled in others. • A Tabu Area is one management tool with which you can manage the use of your qoliqoli. Reducing number of licenses to take fish from your qoliqoli, stopping the use of destructive fishing methods, having one of two seasonally closed areas to meet unplanned for events, are other examples from amongst many tools that can be used. [CAN BE IN PICTURE FORM – 2 LICENSES, 4 BAGS FISH; 5 LICENSES, 10 BAGS OF FISH; 1 APPLICATION OF DYNAMITE RANGE OF THE DEAD – BABIES TO ADULTS OF ALL FISH TYPES, CORAL ETC] • If you have a tabu area and you have no other management tools, chances are there will be no benefits. It should not be used on its own.
2. MY Tabu Area – what is happening inside? How MY tabu area works • Fishing is not the only thing that kills fish. Other fish (Big) fish eat small fish. Fishing in many cases on many reefs has the biggest impact on the fish populations. • By setting up tabu areas, you ensure the fish live longer in the tabu. Fish outside the tabu area will be caught. By living longer, you allow them to grow bigger and have more babies. • Science show bigger fish produce more babies. The more babies produced the more of them that will survive to grow big, the more in numbers of that type of fish that will mature and be available to be fished outside the tabu.. (THIS IS WHERE THAT PICTURE OF BIG FISH MORE BABIES, SMALL FISH LESS NO. OF BABIES. & PROPORTIONATE NOS GROWING INTO ADULTHOOD) • With no fishing in the tabu, fish numbers of different fishes build up and nature’s processes take its course. For instance, there will be more grazing and eating of sargassum and seaweed by parrotfish, clearing coral to grow, giving rise to bigger and more P/F, that will have more and bigger babies…….. and so the cycle of creation moves to restore balance.
The bucket idea Imagine the ‘tabu area’ as a bucket. The water in the bucket represents the number, type and weight of fish. Outside of the bucket represents the open fishing area outside of the tabu area (the rest of the qoliqoli). Half empty Tabu Area Full Tabu Area
3. How do I get the benefits of MY tabu areas? BENEFIT 1 : SPILLOVER OF BIG FISHES & INVERTEBRATES • Over time, as the water level in the bucket (MY tabu) rises to the brim, there is no more space in the bucket to hold the water, the water spills outside the bucket (MY tabu) into the surrounding areas. BENEFIT 2 : SPILLOVER OF BABIES • Fish and invertebrates in the bucket (MY tabu) release millions and millions of very, very small eggs and sperm into the bucket (MY tabu) and drift away on the daily current from MY tabu area to many kilometers away. • Science shows that the majority of eggs and sperm which then form babies many kilometers away come back to the same reef and same tabu. WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? More fish becomes available to be fished in the area surrounding the tabu areas.
BENEFIT 3 : FISHING DIRECTLY IN SEASONAL TABU By fishing directly in the seasonal tabu when it is time for its opening, following the points set out in the guideline Half empty Tabu Area Seasonal Opening will reduce the amount of fish and so will need closing again During closure allow to refill
What happens when the bucket is almost empty? When there is no tabu area there is no or little fish in the fishing area. This is NOT a good situation. WHY? It has taken a long time (years) to go from Drawing 1 to Drawing 3. It will take years again even before we get to Drawing 2. HOW DO WE MAKE SURE WE DO NOT GO BACK TO DRAWING 1? • By setting aside some areas as seasonal tabus HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE THAT YOU DO NOT TAKE TOO MUCH? There are a series of steps in the next section.
4. BEST PRACTICES. If you have decided that the best way to get fisheries benefits is from opening tabu area, then you need to set aside areas as seasonal tabus, that you as a qoliqoli have agreed to open occassionally . This way you ensure your declared 20 YEARS or forever tabu do not go back to Drawing 1. STEPS OF BEST PRACTICES IN OPENING SEASONAL TABU : • Cultural & Governance: • (i) The permission to open is to be sought and given by the Village meeting, Tikina meeting, Vanua meeting, depending on the authority that instituted the tabu. • (ii) In seeking permission to open, the amount of catch must have already be determined in terms of bags of fish and non fish and or in kilograms and the day and time of opening & closing. • (iii) These decisions should have already been done in an earlier meeting of the Qoliqoli Committee. • (iv) Fish wardens must be the first to arrive and position themselves at strategic points before the opening, and the last to leave after closing the area, ensuring every one has left. • (v) Notification also needs to be made two weeks prior to the opening of the tabu area to the partner organisation for monitoring purposes and as an advisory to the Qoliqoli Committee. • (vi).This catch data is needed as part of the analysis to determine effectiveness of management actions. Fish wardens to check legal size limits; count fish by types and sizes; weigh catch or count bags. [THIS MONITORS THE COMPLIANCE TO THE STANDARDS/QUOTAS SET IN THE NEXT SLIDE] • (vii). Catch then is taken to the Turaga ni Vanua, for presentation and advise on numbers of bags and contents of catch; yaqona presentation of thank you from the Vanua to the Committee and the Fish Wardens; Qoliqoli Committee advises the Vanua of closure and commitment to manage qoliqoli as planned until the next opening season.(WHICH SHOULD BE DETERMINED BY THE PROCESS FOR DEFINING THE NEEDS AS NOTE DIN THE THE ENXT SLIDE] • NOTE: Time and Gear used is not a concern at this point.
2. Biology and Ecology of the Tabu Area. HOW MUCH SHOULD YOU TAKE? There is no right answer. 100 fish from 1 fishing ground would be small compared to 100 fish from another fishing ground maybe the entire amount in that fishing ground. You should take as little as possible. HOW DO YOU CONTROL THE AMOUNT THAT IS TAKEN? Relates to governance. Recommended amount taken should be the total amount/how many fishermen are there. Each fishermen should be told beforehand the amount of fish that they can take. • Quantity of fish should be very defined. If its is strings or sacks of fish, it needs to be well defined as to how many strings/sacks? • Time between openings. Science provides another real answer. However, it could be very much dependant on the species you are extracting. For example, the • kawakawa takes 5-10 years . THIS SECTION NEEDS TO BE SET OUT • HOW OFTEN CAN YOU OPEN THE TABU AREA, DEPENDS ON THE SPECIES!
However as a general guideline for opening tabu areas, as evidence from a case study in Vanuatu, indicates that Tabu Areas should not be opened for more than once a year.When the tabu area is opened, it is also important that the fish is caught in a controlled and careful way.2 examples:1. If the tabu area is opened, and a fish drive is done. Fish drive damages all the coral on the seabed, all of the tabu areas will be destroyed in a Fish Drive.It will take a lot longer because of fish need coral top provide them with homes. NO FISH, NO CORAL. Tabu areas need coral cover first before it can get fish.2. Large fish. If the tabu area is to be fished, using spear guns. It is important that not just the big fish are targetted. In fact the biggest of the big fish is left behind. (Refer to discussion on spillover and babies). Big grouper and parrotfish produces most of the babies and young. Therefore, having those biggest of the fish/wrasse in the Tabu Area not catching them in the tabu area, can be repopulated faster.We did not tell you how much fish to take?How long to open your tabu area? WE DONOT KNOW.HOW DO YOU KNOW YOUR MANAGEMENT OF TABU OPENINGS IS WORKING?It will vary from one site to another.How can you assess if your openings are sustainable or not?
6. Adaptive Management • Graph #1: Sustainable opening of tabu areas. (Time,# of fish) In this graph, the opening of the tabu area is done with guidelines, where fish is taken out in a controlled manner. Only by taking a small amount of fish, are we allowing enough time between each openings for the fish to recover and fill the tabu area again.
How will we know if that’s enough fish? When you open the tabu area with the guidelines, you must control how much, how long for and by whom? We know that with this opening, we should have 1 fisherman, 1 hour and 5 fish. At the next opening, the CPUE data will show the same result and the same for future openings throughout.
6. Adaptive Management • Graph #2:This graph is indicative of what happens in a tabu area that has been overfished, no control of the fish taken out, as a result it takes a longer time for the tabu area to build back to the recovery (full) level.
6. Adaptive Management • Graph #3: This graph is indicative of what happens when the openings are too often and the tabu area has not had time to recover and the amount of fish decreases at each opening as it has not reached its full maximum level.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE TABU AREA TO FILL? The time it takes clams, shellfish, bech de mer, ‘cawaki’ and different fishes to grow, mature and have babies differs: 6 months for kaikoso 4 years for saqa (trevally) 6 years for varivoce (Humphead wrasse).
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