Newsletter Number 6 - December 2003

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1 Å NHON K H U B AÛ O T OÀ N B I E MUN MPA Newsletter Number 6 - December 2003 Progress in establishment of the Hon Mun MPA. The Hon Mun Marine Protected Area Pilot Project has been operating since June The last two years has seen a dramatic increase in the understanding in the concept of Marine Protected Areas both at the local and national levels. This year-end provides the opportunity to review milestones that have been achieved and establish plans for the next year. The surveys completed clearly demonstrated that the Hon Mun MPA houses the richest coral biodiversity identified in Vietnam. These corals are vitally important for the fish and other species that depend upon the area. Both the establishment of mooring buoys and the reduction of destructive fishing has improved the potential for coral reef recovery and we look forward to continued improvement of corals and the return of reef fish over the next few years. Villagers within the MPA increasingly recognize that protecting the coral reefs is protecting the fishing future of the area. In addition, the national government is moving forward with its plan to develop a comprehensive network of 15 MPAs in Vietnam. Nha Trang Bay is recognized as one of the Most 29 Beautiful Bays in the World and thus efforts will continue towards its sustainable management. Efforts will continue to assist local people in the generation of livelihoods, villages will be supported to develop waste management systems, enforcement will continue and there will be an increasing focus on the development of sustainable tourism. Over the next twelve months, the development of a capable Hon Mun Marine Protected Area Authority with secured financing for the future, and the adoption of the Management Plan will ensure the longer-term sustainable management of this internationally important Marine Protected Area. On the occasion of the Lunar New Year, The Hon Mun MPA Project Team would like to wish you all a Happy New Year. We look forward to the establishment of a successful system of MPAs. Credit scheme in the Hon Mun MPA The Credit Scheme established by the Hon Mun MPA Project is now operational in partnership with the Khanh Hoa Branch of the Bank for Social Policy. In the period to October 2003, the credit scheme had disbursed 426 million VND to 82 households in the Hon Mun MPA in villages of Bich Dam, Tri Nguyen, Vung Ngan, Vung Me and Dam Bay. The borrowers mostly invested in the range of activities including seaweed cultivation, small businesses pig, goat and cow raising. In addition, seventy two million VND was invested in small-scale trade and 12 million VND in the development of handicraft activities. Meeting between credit borrowers and representative of the Bank of Social Policy In this issue (Continued on page 2) Credit scheme... 1 National training course on MPA... 2 Alternative Income Generation... 3 School education... 4 Aquaculture news... 5 Study tour to Ha Long bay... 6 Enforcement news... 8 Newsletter Number 6 December

2 National Training on Marine Protected Area Management In August 2003, the first National Training Course on Marine Protected Area Management was held in Nha Trang for 30 participants from throughout Vietnam and from the Hon Mun MPA Authority. Through both lectures and field activities, all participants were introduced to the concept of Marine Protected Areas, their benefits and approaches to management. generated most interest were research on marine protected areas, ecotourism with a focus on Con Dao National Park, and the challenges establishing an Marine Protected Area in locations such as Cu Lao Cham Marine Protected Area in Quang Nam. The discussion of the zoning experience at Hon Mun provided some interesting parallels to challenges in National Parks. Overall, the participants reported that the training course was very helpful to them in their work. However, there was a suggestion that there should be additional short-course training activities covering other MPA related topics in the future to build a strong cadre of MPA specialists in Vietnam. Contact: for more information. Field trip in Hon Mun The credit scheme.. (continued from page 1) Lecturers for the training course were drawn from specialist agencies and institutions throughout Vietnam with contributions from international consultants. These leading national specialists provided enthusiastic and professional inputs. Participants included representatives from other protected areas in Vietnam, officers from national and provincial agencies, researchers and academics with an interest in MPAs. The course offered a broad range of topics to interest the participants and share experience between their different work situations. The topics that Group discussion Recently the project held the quarterly credit meetings in each village. Most of the credit group members are doing well with their initiatives and the program appears to be operating smoothly with all credit group members paying interest and contributing to savings. In addition to facilitating the loans, the project has co-operated with other stakeholders in Khanh Hoa Province such as Agriculture and Forestry Extension Center and Veterinary Service of Department of Agriculture and Rural Development to provide training on techniques of animal husbandry. This included training in monitoring health of animals and the vaccination of pigs. Over the next year there will be additional training on animal raising techniques and a continuation of the provision of veterinary services to ensure successful implementation of these ventures. For more information, please contact the Community Development Team of the project 2 Newsletter Number 6 December 2003

3 Alternative Income Generation Basket Making in Hon Mun MPA Assisting families to improve living standards within the Hon Mun MPA is a high priority of the Hon Mun MPA Project. Thus, the recent joint activities with the RAPEXCO company has provided a new opportunity for women in Hon Mot and Vung Ngan villages to undertake basket weaving to generate additional income for their families. Baskets weaving together In each village a number of participants were chosen for the training program. RAPEXCO provided trainers to train local villagers for 3 weeks in each village. The Project s Community Development Team joined the training to encourage and help the villagers complete the training courses. Since the training course, the skills of the basket makers have improved and some people are able to make more than 1 basket per day generating an income of up to 500,000 VND per month. These funds provide a valuable contribution to household incomes and assist them in entering the workforce. This activity also create opportunity to cement family relationships. Voices from the villages - talking with rattan weavers We met Ms. Cuc, in Vung Ngan village, who had been making rattan baskets for almost 2 months. She said that although she often feels tired from sitting while basket weaving, her increased skills and speed of basket making are providing an incentive to continue the activity. She is happy as the income can be used to support her children s studies providing the incentive to keep working. Ms Cuc has 3 children, two of which are in Bui Thi Xuan High School in the mainland. In Hon Mot on the verandah of Ms Van s house was Hon Mot rattan weaving group member Ms Mai. She was happily counting and writing her name on the baskets she had made. She cheerfully reported Last month, from the money we received from basket weaving we purchased one rechargeable light to be able to make basket at night. Using the newly bought light, my productivity has been increased. Since participating in the rattan weaving group, my income has increased, savings have accumulated and I feel happier than before because I have something to do she reported. She noted Last time when my husband could not go fishing offshore because of a storm, he also helped me. On last delivery of raw materials, I received fewer frames and the quality of the banana bark material was not as good, perhaps due to the rain. She plans to ask for more frames and raw material to make baskets if there are excess materials in the village. Rattan weaving group of Vung Ngan village All respondents reported this activity provided not only an increased income, but also created the opportunity for family members to cooperate and work together. In Hon Mot Village the number of members in the basket-weaving group has been stable and some women who have not participated in the activities would like to learn. Ms Tam from Vung Ngan village said My husband would like me to learn how to make baskets. Then he will help me when he is not fishing. (Thanks to Ms. Mai, Ms Cuc, Ms Tam, Ms Thao in Hon Mot and Vung Ngan villages). Newsletter Number 6 December

4 School Education Longer-term approaches to marine protection The school education program developed by the Hon Mun MPA Pilot Project has been operating in schools in the MPA over the last 12 months. The program has assisted students to lean about the environment and the importance of the Hon Mun MPA. The culmination of the schools education program was a quiz between the two schools involved in the program that was filmed and televised on Khanh Hoa Television station. We talked to some students about their involvement in the program and their ideas for the future. Voices from the schools talking with students on Marine Education We were very happy when our school was chosen to study about the marine environment and the Hon Mun MPA. It was an extracurricular subject. We learned about marine environment, the benefits provided by the different habitats of Tense and excited with the competition September. The competition with Bach Dang was a chance for us to show and apply the knowledge we gained over the last year. School television competition Organized with the support of Khanh Hoa television, the competition had a variety of questions and activities. For example, we were required to answer quiz questions and perform Students in marine education class the marine environment. Studies also focused on Hon Mun s biodiversity and the regulations of the MPA. In addition, we went on a study tour to Hon Mun to see for ourselves the coral reef habitat biodiversity. There we learnt more about the Hon Mun MPA, and the MPA s influence on people who depend on the sea. Overall, this program was very exciting. During the lessons, we saw many illustrations and colorful pictures so it was very interesting and easy to understand. We also participated in small competitions in class to help our understanding. This prepared us to participate in the competition Study about Hon Mun with Bach Dang schools last and a happy ending role-plays. So during the competition, we not only trembled with excitement, but were also tense because of the TV cameras and the screaming and excited audience. Nevertheless, we were confident about our knowledge of the subject and we able to perform well. In the preparation for the competition we reviewed useful lessons and gained more knowledge about Hon Mun MPA. We would like to have more competitions, learn more about our nearby Hon Mun MPA, and share our knowledge and experiences with other schools. Then, we may be able to better protect the habitats for our common future. by students from Bui Thi Xuan school 4 Newsletter Number 6 December 2003

5 Seaweed trials Aquaculture News in Hon Mun MPA Once again last year, the Hon Mun MPA experienced high temperatures in the months of June, July and August. This caused some seaweed to be infected with ice -ice disease causing losses to farmers not only within the Hon Mun MPA but also along the coast of Van Ninh district, Khanh Hoa province and Ninh Thuan province. However, now with the cooler temperatures, the disease period is over and the seaweed is growing well at trial areas of Sustainable Aquaculture Demonstration and Training Station (SADTS ) in Vung Ngan and in a private concession in Bich Dam. The weather in autumn and winter with a water temperature of C is suitable for the growth the species Kappaphycus alvarezii. Identifying a suitable season to expand Kappaphycus alvarezii production is important to the culture cycle. As a result of these trials, it is anticipated that the future seedlings will be able to be preserved through the hot season for expansion of the cultivation in the cooler season. formulated pellet foods (one from a private company and the other from the Research Institute Marine Fisheries (RIMF). There appears to be local interest in cobia culture as some households in the MPA have initiated their own cobia trails with small numbers of fish and have produced good results. The project is planning to promote culture of this species in Hon Mun MPA in the future. Sandfish (sea cucumber) trail The sandfish trial in Bich Dam is continuing. After four months, the average sandfish weight was 280g per individual (stocking weight of 180g per individual). The result of this trial combined with other trails indicate that Bich Dam is the most suitable site for sandfish culture within Hon Mun MPA. Other incentives for sandfish culture is its low investment cost, (dependent upon size of pens) and the ease of culture. Cages only need to be checked and cleaned once every two days. Sandfish feed on organic detritus and plankton in the water. Seaweed raft at SADTS Grouper trails To build upon last years successful trails of hatchery bred grouper grown on artificial food, additional grouper trials were initiated using different food types. However, due to disease problems this trail was abandoned. The trail will resume when a reliable source of disease free fry can be identified. Cobia trials Cobia trial is progressing with three different kinds of foods, i.e. small fish, and two Sandfish weight is checked regularly It is hoped that sandfish can be cultured with other species such as seaweed, lobsters and grouper to contribute to environmental improvement and provide an efficient system for culture. Due to popular requests from local people, the project is considering additional trials on sand bass and other species in the near future. Contact for more information. Newsletter Number 6 December

6 Study tour to Ha Long Bay National Park The Hon Mun Marine Protected Area Authority conducted a study tour to Ha Long Bay from 27 October to 1 November 2003 to share experience in tourism management in Ha Long Bay, recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Site. The study tour comprised of senior government officials and representatives from various agencies in Khanh Hoa Province. Halong Bay is very important for tourism in Vietnam and is recognized in many parts of the world. The Halong Bay Management Board has had over 10 years experience in managing the growing tourist numbers in this famous site and has established a visitors fee mechanism to funds its activities. The development within the World Heritage Site has been carefully planned and the area has been able to retain its natural beauty. A collection of inspirational poems was written by Vinh Nguyen Poetry Association after a trip to Hon Mun. Below is one poem from the collection The trip delegation in front of Dau Go cave in Ha Long bay Of particular interest were the approaches and experience of the Ha Long Bay Management Board in organizing coordination among the various provincial agencies with responsibilities within Ha Long Bay. In common with Hon Mun MPA, there are a variety of uses of the area including shipping, tourism and substantial developments in the neighboring coastal zone. Balancing these needs will be vitally important in the future management of Nha Trang Bay. Contact for more information. Welcome to Hon Mun By Tran Huu Hue Our ocean is immense and blue Waves shout happily with endless song Here is the brave Hon Mun, Khanh Hoa The first Marine (Sea life) Protected Area in Vietnam Welcome everyone to the sea s springtime Coral flowers gather at Hon Mun Providing a colorful shelter for fish to breed and live Reuniting all descendants for the family gathering We are improving the environment of the blue sea Like making our lives happy forever Dear Hon Mun with forever beautiful coral From here your waves make others happy. Hon Mun, Nha Trang 8/ Newsletter Number 6 December 2003

7 News On 29 November 2003, at Ran Trao Coral Reef, Van Ninh District, Khanh Hoa province, a oneday meeting was held between the Youth and Women Unions of both Ran Trao Coral Reef and from the Hon Mun Opening ceremony of Eco-tourism and Environmental Education Center of Hon Mun MPA Ms Thom from Tri Nguyen village in a group discussion MPA to discuss approaches to awareness raising. At the meeting participants agreed that the concept of MPA should be mainstreamed into the activities of the Youth and the Women Unions to support the establishment of MPAs. Highlighted activities included garbage collection, fish releasing and the competitions aimed at the Youth and Women Unions to increase awareness of communities on marine protection. Furthermore, other discussions focused on recognizing the role of women and the creation of opportunities for local people to become more involved in community environmental management such as assisting the Village Women Unions to establish self-financing garbage collection system. On 9 th August 2003, the ECO-TOURISM AND ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTER OF HON MUN MPA was established following the decision No. 984/QD-UB on 17 th April 2003 of the Khanh Hoa Provincial People s Committee. The center aims to increase awareness of environmental protection and understanding of the marine environment through eco-tourism activities in the Hon Mun MPA. Planned activities include viewing coral reef biological diversity by glass-bottom boat, diving and beach recreation in these beautiful sites. In addition, other activities being considered are activities to understanding the customs and life of the people in MPA. The Center will seek to that tourists have a clear understanding of the importance of the MPA and will seek to involve local people in helping them generate employment and income. The 2004 calendar has been produced!! The annual calendar provides the opportunity to share information on the beauty of Hon Mun MPA. This year s calendar focuses on the natural and environmental resources, and the socio-economic activities within the Hon Mun MPA. It is hoped that it can engender a love of sea and the protection of the environment amongst all who receive it! The calendar has been printed and circulated to local communities and stakeholders. Mooring equipment received In November 2003, the Hon Mun MPA Authority received mooring buoy installation equipment as a grant from NOAA, Government of the United States of America. This equipment will be used from early next year in the installations of mooring buoys throughout the Hon Mun MPA. Newsletter Number 6 December

8 Enforcement news Since the establishment of the Hon Mun Marine Protected Area in 2001 the Enforcement Team has collaborated with the Border Military Station 388 and Fisheries Resources Protection Branch of Khanh Hoa in the implementation of the regulations. These activities have increased awareness of the importance of protection of the Hon Mun MPA. Despite a good response by most users of the Hon Mun MPA to the regulations, one recent case highlights the difficulties in enforcement. his sickness he then absconded. Following an arrest order, Mr Vo Van Cam was caught on the 5 th of August 2003 and at a trial on the 3 rd December 2003 in Nha Trang City People s Court, he was found guilty and sentenced to 2 years in prison. At the court, he showed his regret for what he had done. He also promised that after finishing the sentence he would never use dynamite fishing or other destructive fishing methods any longer. We all know it is catastrophic using dynamite fishing because it may destroy marine resources and there will be no breeding to recover the resources for future generations. In addition, although it is dangerous to employ such a fishing technique, there are men who still use them without thinking of the consequences on the living environment for our descendants. HON MUN MPA CONTACT INFORMATION Mr Cam at the court Mr Vo Van Cam, Hon Ro 2, Phuoc Dong, Nha Trang City has many times illegally engaged in dynamite fishing and destroyed marine environment in Nha Trang Bay (see Newsletter No. 3). According to the records of the Border Military station 388, before Hon Mun MPA was established, Mr Vo Van Cam was caught three times for dynamite fishing. At dawn of 30 th November 2002, he and his two sons were caught dynamite fishing within the Hon Mun MPA. The penalty for this case was 4,000,000 VND. On 12 th of February 2003, he was again detained for a similar violation and was temporarily jailed. Upon obtaining bail due to Address: 80 Hoang Van Thu street Nha Trang City Khanh Hoa Province Vietnam Telephone: (84) Fax: (84) Board of Editors: Chu Tien Vinh - PhD Truong Kinh Bernard O Callaghan Nguyen Chi Doan Hanh Publishing Responsibility: Chu Tien Vinh- PhD Bernard O Callaghan Design: Nguyen Chi Doan Hanh Print 500 copies at Cat Thanh Company with permission No. 157/XBKH issued by Khanh Hoa Department of Culture and Information on the 23 rd December of Newsletter Number 6 December 2003

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