HON MUN MPA. Newsletter Number 4 May Issues in Water Quality and Fish Diseases in Hon Mun MPA. Coastline Planning for the future

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1 K H U B AÛ O T OÀ N B I EÅ N HON MUN MPA Newsletter Number 4 May 2003 Coastline Planning for the future Khanh Hoa Province over the last month has celebrated its 350-year anniversary. This is provided the opportunity to think about the important role that the oceans and coastal environment has played in the development of the province. The development of a strong and vibrant economy of Khanh Hoa Province has been supported by the rich bounties of the oceans. Coastal reefs have provided fish and livelihoods for many people and the cooler offshore waters provide a range of migratory fish species. The oceans will continue to provide fish for future generations, however over the next years tourism will play an increasingly important role in driving economic growth in the province. Tourism will be based on a clean and healthy marine environment. A clean beach and clean water will ensure a continuous supply of people looking for adventure. Other uses of water such as coastal development, aquaculture and waste discharge have the potential to reduce the quality of water. Thus, a balance must be found between the difference uses of the coastal zone. The Hon Mun Marine Protected Area Pilot Project is seeking to find a model for balancing these uses within the Hon Mun MPA. This will be achieved by seeking to understand the needs of the different users in the development of plans that will balance the different uses for a healthy and productive environment for the longer term. The Government of Vietnam is currently planning to develop additional Marine Protected Areas in Vietnam. This includes sites on Phu Quoc Island Cau Lau Cham near Da Nang. This would add to the current efforts being carried out in Con Dao and Bai Tu Long Bay. It is anticipated that the Hon Mun MPA will provide a useful model for the development of these additional sites. Issues in Water Quality and Fish Diseases in Hon Mun MPA The recent occurrences of diseases in cultured grouper and increasing development of cage culture within the MPA, highlighted the need to complete a rapid assessment of water quality and diseases in cultured fish from within the Hon Mun MPA. This study was conducted in collaboration with specialists from Aquaculture Faculty, University of Fisheries. Sampling for water quality was completed in 15 points within the MPA and investigations of fish diseases were completed in Vung Me and Vung Ngan. This rapid survey indicated that water quality was acceptable except for a high level of total suspended solids (76.7 ± 2.8 mg/l, higher than Ministry of Fisheries standard for aquaculture). The study recorded 67 phytoplankton species of which 83.6% were diatoms. Phytoplankton density varied between cells/m 3 and cells/m 3. A number of species of toxic algae were found at low densities, these included Gonyaulax sp, Gymnodinium sp, Nocticula sp and Dinophysis miles. Some cultured fish in Vung Me and Vung Ngan were infected by parasites (Megalocotyloides epinepheli, Benedenia sp, Pseudorhabdosynochus epinepheli) and bacteria (Vibrio spp. and Flexibacter sp). These pathogens can cause necrosis and can result in heavy mortality. Recommendations for disease prevention and treatment were provided to fish farmers. For further information, please contact Aquaculture team at Inide this issue Issues in Water Quality Issues...1 Sport net making...2 Eco-tourism activities...2 Training news... 2,3 Marine educators meeting...3 Philippines study tour...4 Dam dang net-traditional fishing...5 Marine Education Program for local schools...6 Local patrollers impression...6 Seaweed jelly promotion...7 Aquaculture news...8

2 Sport net making helps to increase local villagers income Sport net making has been initiated to create more jobs and to increase income for local villagers in the Hon Mun MPA. With enthusiastic support of Vinh Nguyen People Committee and an owner of a sports net making company based in Nha Trang, training activities have been started to create additional employment opportunities. Eco-tourism activities in Hon Mun MPA Last year there were over 330,000 visitors to Nha Trang Bay of which were from other countries. Gifted with naturally beauty, Nha Trang Bay is ideal for marine eco-tourism activities. To help the local community increase incomes, and to propagate activities on environmental protection and marine ecotourism, Khanh Hoa People Committee has approved the establishment of an Eco-tourism and Environmental Education Center. A Visitor s Centre to be constructed on Hon Mun Island will also assist in increasing educational awareness of visitors to the Hon Mun MPA. Other planned eco-tourism activities will include a Glass Bottom boat (launched on 27 March 2003) for viewing coral, development local village tourism and diving. Learning how to make sports nets A hands-on training course on Sport net making techniques was held in February in Bai Tru Village with five villagers. Mr. Chien from a local sportsgoods company provided the technical knowledge and will purchase the nets from the makers. The manufacture of various nets was introduced during the training course, however most trainees seemed to like the manufacture of volleyball nets as the technique is easier. The potential income is 3,000 3,500 VND per volleyball net, and one woman having to deal with household chores can produce 3-4 volleyball nets per day. Some of the trainees and villagers feel that the proposed income is low as compared to the 30,000 VND paid for rubbish collection by Bai Tru Resort; or compared to the 90,000 VND gained from one lobster seedling from fishing activities. Nevertheless, there was interest in continuing this as an interesting additional income source for their family. For further information, please contact Community Development team at Glass Bottom boat launched These activities are organized not only to increase income for local communities but also to enhance tourists experience to learn about local traditions and customs, and to increase environmental protection and consciousness. TRAINING NEWS Provincial training on MPA management The concept of Marine Protected Areas is new in Khanh Hoa Province. Thus, to increase provincial understanding of the concept, 17 representatives of provincial agencies joined a two-day training course on MPA concepts and approaches from 6-7 March The training course contributed to increasing awareness of marine environmental protection and the need for coordination between the agencies with differing uses of the marine environment. 2

3 Group discussion Some of the more interesting discussions focused on generating benefits for local people in the management of coastal areas and approaches for collaborative management of marine resources. First Aid training To ensure the safety and well being of all working in the Hon Mun MPA, a training course was held last month to provide basic first aid skills. The training delivered by the Khanh Hoa Vocational school of Medicine was followed with intense attention on the words of the trainers and the staff learnt from the range of practical activities provided during the training. Practising how to dress the wound The skills focused on the emergency and first aid situations that are required for the field based activities while staff will be working in the Hon Mun MPA. Marine Educators Meeting Marine environmental education is new in Vietnam and the Hon Mun MPA Project welcomed the opportunity to discuss approaches to marine education with those practitioners from other parts of Vietnam on March 6, This included officers from the Hon Mun Project, Halong World Heritage Authority, Fauna & Flora International and the International Marinelife Alliance. The meeting allowed the marine educators to share their experiences in the delivery of marine education activities. All participants recognized the benefits to be gained through the development of systems for cooperation and a number of recommendations were made for future cooperation. Some of these recommendations included a National Marine Educators Workshop to share experiences from throughout Vietnam, establishment of a Marine Educators Network, and development of training and study programs. It was emphasized that these activities were important for the development of a longer-term program of marine education in Vietnam. Environmental Development Fund in action Three activities from the Village Development Fund have been completed in villages in the Hon Mun MPA. These include building of a 200 meter road connecting 2 areas of Vung Me village. This road was officially opened on the 23 January An electricity generator has been installed at Hon Mot and began operation 11 March Construction of concrete floor for the market in Tri Nguyen is complete. Contracts for constructing a wall for Bich Dam Health Care Station, safety protection and landscaping at Dam Bay Kindergarten and path building at Vung Ngan are being finalized. It is expected that these three works will be completed in May Aquaculture News (continue page 8) Sanctuary Rehabilitation Zone at Hon Mun Island: An area in the northern side of Hon Mun Island was established as a Sanctuary Rehabilitation Zone. An 800-m 2 raft was constructed and fully stocked with Kappaphycus alvarezii with expectation to provide habitats and possibly foods for some marine fish species. This appears to be working as significant predation on the seaweed has been observed. For full report and further details, please contact Aquaculture team at 3

4 Study Tour to the Philippines The study tour to Cebu in The Philippines was an exciting adventure. In The Philippines, we wanted to learn how the issues of over fishing, poison and dynamite fishing are being successfully addressed, and furthermore, method to improve activities in the Hon Mun MPA. Our group comprising fourteen people including key MPA representatives from all six villages of Hon Mun MPA, staff from Vinh Nguyen Commune and from the Khanh Hoa PPC. Before leaving Vietnam, we visited Cat Tien National Park situated north of Ho Chi Minh City to learn more about Vietnam s approaches to protected areas management. Our visit helped us understand the management of a large protected forest area in Vietnam. We had the opportunity to discuss with local people how they improved their livelihoods through handicraft activities. At night, we went into the forest to look at wild animals. In some of the Marine Sanctuaries local communities have designed simple and attractive activities to promote eco-tourism. In addition, the villages are clean because there is an efficient garbage collection system managed by the village. In addition, it was clear that for Simple but efficient garbage collection system in the Philippines the well protected and managed Marine Sanctuaries over the last 20 years there has been a significant improvement in the coral reefs and numbers of fish. Indeed, in all the places we snorkeled, the coral was magnificent and the fish were much bigger and more plentiful than in our Hon Mun MPA. Local outrigger boats in the Philippines Upon arrival in Manila, we began our memorable and sometimes shaky trip, hopping from one island to the other on board local outrigger boats. In The Philippines we recognized the strong connection of the lives of the people to the sea and the importance of the large coral areas to the people. The most interesting lessons local villagers shared with us were their involvement in the definition and the management of the Marine Sanctuaries. The villagers themselves are in charge of the enforcement in the Marine Sanctuary and an efficient fee collection system brings significant income back to the village to be used for management-related activities. Enjoy cultural activities with local community We hope that sharing our experience from The Philippines with our fellow villagers living in the Hon Mun MPA will increase their awareness of the importance of MPAs and provide some management ideas, and understanding of the long-term benefits MPAs can provide. To learn more, please contact Community Development team at 4

5 Dam Dang Nets A traditional fishery Fishing is a way of life for the coastal people of Vietnam. One of the more interesting fishing gears used in the province of Khanh Hoa is a Dam Dung Net. This traditional fishery has supported generations of people within the Hon Mun MPA. This article will describe the Dam Dang fishery and its contribution to the livelihoods of local people. A traditional fishery The origin of the fishery is subject of much speculation. Some report that the fishery originated from Quang Ngai & Binh Dinh Provinces to the north of Khanh Hoa province. People from Nha Trang Bay then introduced this technique into the local waters. A second and more traditional story is that while hunting and collecting the honey, local people living saw large schools of fish swimming around the islands. Different nets were designed to catch these fish and improved year after year. Thus the design of the nets seen today is the results of many year of ingenious experimentation! and not able to escape. There are people in water at all times watching for the large valuable fish that enter this area. The thirty or so crewmember of the net lifts the net twice a day or more often if there are large fish in the net. What is caught? A number of species are caught in the Dam Dang net. However, the most valuable are large tuna. In addition, there are mackerel and a range of other pelagic species. Pelagic is a term that refers to those species that are ocean going. However, the catches of these species has been decreasing in recent years. This is due to increasing fishing efforts in the offshore areas targeting the same species. Net was being drawn What about the environment? Prepare to set up a bamboo weir The Dam Dang Net The Dam Dang fishery is a fixed net passive fishery that specifically targets open ocean species. These ocean fish sometimes chase smaller fish closer to shore in areas like Nha Trang on the edge of the continental shelf. The nets operate in the following manner. The pelagic fish move into the coastal areas to feed. The Dam Dang net runs out parallel from the shore of the islands and the fish sense the net. They move and swim along the side of the net and are guided into a holding area call the play ground. Once in this area the fish are trapped The Dam Dang Net is a targeted fishery and although there is same by catch of trapped in the net, this is minimal compared to other fishing technologies. However, there are concerns about the anchoring of the nets can damage coral reefs. Future of Dam Dang Nets in Hon Mun MPA While fisheries stocks remain healthy and the fishing economically viable, it is expected that these nets will remain the in the Hon Mun MPA. However, there needs to be careful consideration about these nets in the core. 5

6 Marine Education Program for local schools Recognizing that children are the future decision makers, a school education program has been developed for local school students. In collaboration with 120 teachers from two local schools, namely Bui Thi Xuan secondary school and Bach Dang elementary school (Vinh Nguyen commune), an Marine Environmental Education Program has been developed. Consisting of 10 units with different marine environmental themes, the program has now been delivered to about 500 students in the Hon Mun area. Enforcement News During the last one year a variety of education and awareness activities have been conducted within the Hon Mun MPA. The number of reports of illegal activities has been decreasing over recent months. However, there are still some anchoring of boats on coral reefs and some dynamite fishing. Enforcement activities have resulted in the arrest of a number of offenders. However, it is recognized that the focus of enforcement is prevention through education and thus efforts will continue to build awareness of regulation of the MPA for people living not only in the MPA but also for those fishermen from surrounding areas. Local patrollers impression about participating in enforcement team An environment class at Bui thi Xuan school, Nha Trang City Each week for 10 weeks, teachers lead their students in a range of marine education lessons on topics including diversity of the oceans, marine food chains and marine conservation. For each lesson the Project provides teacher-training materials and one project staff member attends each class to provide assistance, monitor progress and encourage both teachers and students. Group discussion with students It is hoped that as students gain a greater understanding of the marine environment as they will play and important role in environmental protection and share their experience with the wider public. For more information about the training program, please contact Education Awareness Unit at Identifying ways to increase the awareness of local villagers on the benefits of marine resource protection is one of the most significant challenges for the Hon Mun MPA Project. Community education programs and livelihood improvement programs will play an important role in this process. One of the most important roles for local villagers is their involvement in patrolling and enforcement within the Hon Mun MPA. A local enforcement team has been established that works together with the Hon Mun MPA Authority enforcement staff. Members of this team include Mr. Hiep (Vung Me Village), Mr Liem (Hon Mot Island) and Mr. Minh (Dam Bay Village) who are proud to be contributing to the work of protecting the Hon Mun MPA and to the development of a strategy of natural resources management and environment protection. When interviewed they indicated that due to limited opportunities for income generation, people both within and outside Hon Mun MPA will continue to utilize the core zones without regularly patrolling. Thus they recognize the importance of patrolling at the peak use hours, while continuing to conduct education and awareness activities on the benefits of MPA. They stressed the importance of the development of alternative livelihood activities to assist local people. For more information, please contact Enforcement team at 6

7 Try the delicious natural seaweed jelly from Hon Mun MPA!! As the readers know from our previous Newsletters, seaweed culture trials have proven quite successful in MPA villages over the last months. Seaweed jelly recipe Raw material - Dried seaweed : 200 grams - Sugar : 1.2kg - Other spices : Vanilla, ginger Seaweed culture in Hon Mun MPA The production and sale of seaweed jelly may provide an opportunity for local people to operate a profitable small-scale business. Thus a seaweed jelly s trial is underway with the support of the Vinh Nguyen Commune and the MPA Village Committee in Tri Nguyen. Recently, local seaweed jelly trials have been conduced with local people from Tri Nguyen village. There have been promotions and the selling of seaweed jelly in the local market in Tri Nguyen and at Cau Da Port. Initial results are promising and opportunities for further distribution outlets at high tourist traffic areas such as Hon Tam and the Tri Nguyen Aquarium are being investigated. Cooking - Soak dried seaweed in freshwater for 2 hours. Divide into two parts. - Add one part into 1,2 liters of water and boil until it dissolved - Put sugar and spices into water - Wait until sugar and boiled seaweed dissolve in water - Add the remaining part of soaked dried seaweed and continue cooking until the remaining dry seaweed starts to break down. - Remove from heat and divide into individual servings Nutrient composition of seaweed jelly - 12 different amino acids: µµg/g - Organic matter: P, N, Protein, Lipid...:60.88 g/100g - Mineral: K, Na, Mg, Ca: 69.2 mg/g Next time you are at Cau Da Port, please visit the stall and try this delicious natural product from the Hon Mun MPA. The product has been tested by Pasteur Institute, Nha Trang 7

8 Aquaculture News Preliminary trials of rabbit fish culture (Siganus guttatus) in cages in Hon Mun MPA yielded promising outcomes. Cultured fish fed with commercial pellets for catfish grew from 30 g (at stocking) to 120 g after three months. The survival rate, however, was just over 50% and would need to be improved for a higher profitability. The fish mortality was higher at the beginning of the trials and was significantly reduced after supplementary feeding with seaweed (Kappaphycus alvarezii) was initiated. Additional trials will be completed soon to further investigate the potential for this species. The Hon Mun MPA s Aquaculture Education & Training Centre is to be established in Vung Ngan. This centre will provide the focus for (i) the implementation of AIG-aquaculture trials, (ii) aquaculture education and training activities for local people, (iii) the provision of extension services (i.e. distribution of seed, feed and technical advice) and assistance in marketing green aquaculture products. Also, it is anticipated that this venue will serve as a meeting centre for local communities. End of sandfish trials in Bich Dam: Two hundred and forty six animals averaging 167 g were harvested from trials in Bich Dam after eight months of culture. Survival rate was low (27.5%) thought to be due to a high level of predation and low food availability (because of high stocking density). Larger-scale trials supervised by Mr. Rayner Pitt (Research Institute for Aquaculture 3) were initiated in March 2003 for the further investigation on the potential of sandfish aquaculture. Back to their natural home: Three hundred and eighty five sandfish (the majority from the trials in Bich Dam) were released at Hon Mun Island in the core zone of the MPA last month. Monitoring of the release was conducted by the project in collaboration with sandfish specialist, Mr. Rayner Pitt (RIA3) and the assistance of two Norwegian students, Mr. Hermanni Backer & Mr. Oivind Fjukmoen from Bergen University. Spawning of some of the released animals was observed 3-4 hours after the release hopefully contributing to future population growth. Sandfish released at Hon Mun 8 Monitoring of aquaculture trial Follow-up activities for seaweed trials: The success of seaweed (Kappaphycus alvarezii) trials in Hon Mun MPA suggests the area has a high potential for seaweed culture for local fishermen to generate additional income. There have been recent discussions with representatives from Vietnam Seaweed Company and local people on the prospects for the seaweed market in Vietnam. Several households in each village have requested financial assistance through the provision of credit from the project to cultivate seaweed in Hon Mun MPA. Happy moment is another common name for the rabbit fish. Following the release of the sandfish in Hon Mun Island, 235 rabbit fish (120 g on average) were released at the same site on 3 April It is expected that these fish will remain around the island and reproduce to enhance their population. (Continued on page 3) HON MUN MPA CONTACT INFORMATION Address: 80 Hoang Van Thu street Nha Trang City Khanh Hoa Province Vietnam Telephone: (84) Fax: (84)

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