Call for applications: Workshop on Assessment of Management Effectiveness of marine protected areas (MPAs)

October 13th, 2016 No comments

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) is inviting submission of applications to attend a “Assessment of Management Effectiveness of marine protected areas (MPAs): a workshop to identify appropriate regional approaches and methodologies, and to integrate these with ongoing initiatives to build management capacity in the Western Indian Ocean”, that will be held in Mombasa, Kenya from 5 to 9 December 2016.

The aim of the workshop is therefore to help build capacity for understanding and using MEAs as a means to improve MPA management, building on earlier and current initiatives.  It will also be used to identify appropriate approaches and methodologies that could be disseminated through the region and will provide a calibration of progress in MEA in the WIO and will provide an opportunity to share challenges and lessons learned. The course will cover all types of MPAs, included community-managed sites and LMMAs.

The 5-day workshop will bring together 22 MPA managers, technical officers and practitioners from across the WIO who have experience with MEA, as well as those who wish to initiate MEAs at their sites and need support and knowledge.  The course will be practical and interactive using tailor-made and relevant existing material.  Participants will be requested to bring information about their MPAs, such as management plans, indicators and monitoring plans, and reports from their research, monitoring or management work.

Deadline for completed applications: 24 October 2016.

Please download the application form and submit it to by email to Nyawira Muthiga ( and cc to Sue Wells (

For more details, please read the full announcement.

Categories: Events, News Tags:

OTGA-KMFRI Training Course: Repositories, Communication & Outreach and OceanDocs: Call for applications!

October 13th, 2016 No comments

The International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) and Ocean Teacher Global Academy (TGA) in collaboration with the Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI) are organizing a “OTGA-KMFRI Training Course: Repositories, Communication & Outreach and Ocean Docs” to be held in Mombasa, Kenya from 21-25 November 2016.

This course will explore important repository aspects and address issues faced by those intending or implementing and managing their own repository or using the open, free, secure and permanent marine science thematic repository (OceanDocs). Communication & Outreach tools sessions will discuss and offer practical experience of creating websites and social media. An OceanDocs workshop will demonstrate and explore the benefits of joining the OceanDocs Community of depositors and users.

The deadline for submission of application is 30 October 2016.

Please complete the online application form at

For more details, please visit,

Categories: Events, News Tags:

Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean Book Launch

October 13th, 2016 No comments
KMFRI Director, Prof. James Njiru during the first book launch ‘Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean: Status and Management’. PHOTO: Dr. Bosire

KMFRI Director, Prof. James Njiru during the first book launch ‘Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean: Status and Management’. PHOTO: Dr. Bosire

Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean Book Launch

by Wanjiru Jacqueline and Nina Wambiji

It was an honour for Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI) to host the first book launch entitled ‘Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean: Status and Management’ on 22nd September 2016. The event was spearheaded by Dr. Jared Bosire (WWF and also the Head Editor) and Dr. James .G. Kairo (KMFRI). The launch was graced by different stakeholders amongst them World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), State Department of Fisheries and the Blue Economy (SDF & BE), Kenya Forest Research Institute (KEFRI), National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), Base Titanium, Coastal & Marine Resource Development (COMRED Africa), Community Action for Nature Conservation (CANCO), Coastal Oceans Research and Development Indian Ocean (CORDIO-EA) and KMFRI.

In attendance was the president WIOMSA and KCDP Project Manager Dr. Jacqueline Uku who was impressed by the Mangrove team and urged the other researchers to come up with write ups on coral reefs, sea-grass among others. She highlighted how WIOMSA as fraternity disbursed knowledge to many stakeholders, how different grants especially book grants were to be sourced by stakeholders so that they would package their work and disseminate it. She said ‘Books survive us, books live beyond us’. She was happy to note that KCDP had supported the development of the Kenyan Mangrove Management plan and this book ties in with that effort. She further reminded participants that WIOMSA celebrates partnerships.

WWF Regional Director, Dr. Awer was also present and was impressed by what KCDP has achieved not only through sensitizing the communities at the Coast but also the resources it has created at KMFRI like the ‘Ocean Centre Building’ which has the state of the art facilities. Dr. Awer mentioned that the book should have a positive impact to the world as it was the kind of legacy mankind should leave and that researchers should use it widely as a reference. He encouraged all participants that Kenya had unparalleled capacity and we need to use it to solve our problems. All the knowledge acquired through school and experience at work needs to be translated to solutions.

Dr. Edward Kimani, the Assistant Director Fisheries at KMFRI talked about RV Mtafiti as a platform that all stakeholders would use to answer some of the unknown in the Western Indian Ocean especially the Kenyan Economic Exclusive Zone. He also noted that aquaculture was the fastest growing sector and resources need to be channelled towards the two.

The key speaker during the event; Dr. Bosire (Conservation Director- WWF Kenya Office), insisted that development was very vital to our Country and everyone has a role in ensuring sustainability in the various upcoming projects. He urged members to participate with the Country Government by transferring skills especially in issues such as spatial planning. The book on Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean was the first and that one of its main goals was to support capacity building among the communities. He requested the researchers to get copies.

KMFRI Director, Prof. James Njiru said that the book was remarkable in that Mangroves on the Ecosystem was very critical especially to the Blue Economy. He urged the researchers to work as a team and produce books which can be used as reference and equally impress the policy makers. The Directors words echoed a quote by Joyce Carol Oates, ‘The first sentence can’t be written until the final sentence is written’.

Lastly, all the invited guests witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between KMFRI and WWF championed by Mr. Patrick Gwada to strengthen their working relations in areas of mutual interest and for the development of both Organisations. All the Organisations that had attended the launch were each awarded with an autographed book by Dr. Bosire.



Categories: Events, News Tags:

Latest WIOMSA Newsbrief Published

October 4th, 2016 No comments

The September edition of the quarterly WIOMSA Newsbrief is out. The issue features regional news, articles from WIOMSA’s MARG Grantees and stories from newly minted PhDs. The articles include:

  • Managing Non-Academic Impact of Research: Capacity Building for Impact Training held in Mombasa.
  • WIOFish Revamped
  • Training on Scientific Cruise Planning, Oceanographic Sampling, Fisheries and Data Management.
  • MARG Grant: Assessing the vulnerability to future environmental conditions and population structure of the seagrass, Zostera capensis.
  • MARG Grant: Fish, Genes & Genomes: Contributions to Ecology, Evolution & Management, the Annual Symposium of the Fisheries Societies of the British Isles, Bangor, Wales, UK.
  • PhD Thesis: Resilience of Mangroves in the face of Climate change: A Focus on the Impacts of Large Sedimentation Events.
  • PhD Thesis: The Potential of Community Based Coral Aquaculture in Madagascar
  • The InteGRADE Workshop
  • Strategic Adaptive Management Program (SAM) launched in Seychelles.
  • Progress with the proposed marine and coastal Transboundary Conservation Area (TBCA) between Kenya and Tanzania
  • New WIOMSA Publications

Download the full issue.

Wildlife Conservation Society, Waitt Foundation, blue moon fund, and Global Environment Facility Announce Major Commitment to Expand and Protect the World’s Marine Protected Areas (MPAs)!

September 23rd, 2016 No comments
  • A $48 million commitment toward MPA expansion and improved management revealed at the Our Ocean conference hosted by U.S. State Department
  • MPAs provide immense benefits for the world’s marine ecosystems — for fish and people
  • This commitment will be used to expand and improve MPA coverage to protect 10 percent of the world’s oceans by 2020
  • Oceans have lost 95 percent of their predators, a third of coral reefs are severely degraded, and the majority of the world’s fisheries are over-exploited
  • While close to 15 percent of land is set aside for conservation, only 3.5 percent of the oceans are formally protected, with less than 2 percent secured in full “no-fishing” zones  

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 15, 2016) – The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), along with the Waitt Foundation, the blue moon fund (bmf), and the Global Environment Facility (GEF), announced a major commitment to expand the world’s marine protected areas (MPAs).

The announcement was made during the U.S. State Department’s Our Ocean 2016 Conference, in Washington, D.C., at which Secretary of State John Kerry invited heads of state, scientists, business leaders, NGOs, and others to tackle key issues including marine protected areas, sustainable fisheries, marine pollution, and climate-related impacts on the ocean.

MPAs have been shown to provide immense benefits for the world’s marine ecosystems. Recent studies have demonstrated that marine reserves have the ability to more than quadruple fish biomass over time in coral reef ecosystems. Others show that the fishermen near marine reserves see their income more than double.

WCS, the Waitt Foundation and bmf will together commit a minimum of $15 million to the WCS MPA Fund, which will support MPA expansion and creation efforts in countries where WCS works. The GEF will commit an additional $33 million to projects that expand or improve the effectiveness of MPAs in line with countries’ commitment to their 2020 targets. WCS continues to solicit additional commitments to grow the impact of this work even further.

The combined commitment will invest $48 million in new resources toward the expansion and improved effectiveness of MPAs across the world’s oceans, in order to meet or exceed the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the Convention on Biological Diversity Aichi Biodiversity Targets of protecting 10 percent of the world’s oceans by 2020.

The MPA Fund has been created at a pivotal moment in time; a dramatic increase in ocean protection is urgently needed. We have lost 95 percent of ocean predators, a third of coral reefs are severely degraded and the majority of the world’s fisheries are over-exploited. Today, while close to 15 percent of land is set aside for conservation, only 3.5 percent of the oceans are formally protected, with less than 2 percent secured in full “no-fishing” zones.

Cristián Samper, President and CEO of WCS, said, “It is time for bold and catalytic action for ocean conservation. We must recognize the critical role Marine Protected Areas play in protecting people and wildlife. Marine Protected Areas are a win-win. Marine Protected Areas are our best conservation tool protecting habitat, improving fisheries, supporting local livelihoods and securing the long-term health of marine biodiversity and the oceans. We must rally together around solutions like Marine Protected Areas for our greatest partner supporting all life on Earth, our oceans.”

Ted Waitt, Founder and Chairman of the Waitt Foundation, said, “The Waitt Foundation is enthusiastic to have catalyzed this combined private and public investment in marine protected areas. It has been our pleasure to work with WCS in the waters of Argentina, Gabon, Fiji, Chile and Congo to date, and look forward to seeing their efforts and commitment scaled across the global to support a dramatic expansion of MPAs by 2020.  We thank the blue moon fund and the GEF for their investments and call on others to join and help leverage greater impact.”

Diane Edgerton Miller, President and CEO of blue moon fund, said, “By investing in the most biodiverse marine environments, we can safeguard wildlife populations and support livelihoods of people who depend on these invaluable resources. The commitments made today are our best chance to reach the goal of conserving 10 percent of the world’s oceans by 2020.”

Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson, said, “We need to match political commitments with financial support for the world’s oceans. I am pleased to announce the GEF’s new commitment of $33 million dollars to create, expand and improve the effectiveness of over 7 million hectares of marine protected areas. These new funds will help ensure protection of valuable marine and coastal ecosystems worldwide, our vital global commons.”

Governments around the world have made a public commitment to reverse the trend of ocean degradation and by 2020 dramatically expand the area under protection, through the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 14.5 and the Convention on Biological Diversity Aichi Target 11. Establishing MPAs to cover at least 10 percent of our planet’s oceans will hold back overfishing, reverse the decline of threatened species and protect what remains of critical ocean habitat for a more sustainable ocean future.

The MPA Fund and GEF Commitment will prioritize investment in marine ecosystems with high value in biodiversity and ecosystem services for coastal economies and people. The targeted countries of this combined commitment include: Albania, Argentina, Bangladesh, Belize, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Djibouti, Ecuador, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Gabon, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Mozambique, Myammar, Nicaragua, Peru, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Tanzania, Turkey, Tuvalu, and Vietnam.

Categories: Environment in the Media, Events, News Tags:

The Shark Fin Soup comic strip

September 16th, 2016 No comments

IOC-SmartFish programme is pleased to submit herewith its new publication: a comic strip entitled ‘The Shark Fin Soup’.

The Shark Fin Soup is a project that the Seychellois artist, Peter Lalande, had in mind for a long time. He wanted to tell a story about a cruel practice which deeply shocked him. The project became a reality following a meeting with a group of fishermen from FBOA (The Fishing Boat Owners Association in Seychelles) who were conscious that such practice is not only devastating but also detrimental to the environment they depend upon. Henceforth with the help of the fishermen (FBOA), the IOC-SmartFish programme and FAO, Seychelles Fishing Authority and Green Island Foundation; Peter has worked hard to tell this extraordinary adventure through a didactic comic book. This comic is about sharks and points out the various threats they are facing. It aims at raising awareness about the dangers the sharks are facing nowadays.

We hope that you will find it useful and informative.

Like all SmartFish programme reports, it is available on SmartFish website:


Categories: New Publication, News Tags:

The 2015 Annual Report is out!

September 13th, 2016 No comments


2015 Annual Report is out! WIOMSA prepares its Annual Report each year to highlight its key activities and achievements to our members, partners and stakeholders. The report also profiles selected work from its grantees and WIOMSA’s partners.

Hope you will enjoy reading it. Comments are welcome.

Download the full Report.



















IUCN Congress Hawai‘i Commitments set sail

September 11th, 2016 No comments

Today, Members of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) adopted the Hawai‘i Commitments, an innovative document that sets out the opportunities to meet key conservation challenges identified at the IUCN World Conservation Congress.

The Commitments were shaped by Congress debates and deliberations and were submitted for comment to some 8,500 participants who attended the event. The Hawaii Commitments address issues such as sustaining world food supplies, maintaining the health of the oceans, addressing wildlife trafficking, addressing the challenge of engaging with the private sector, and building resilience to climate change.

The Hawai‘i Commitments highlight nature-based solutions to climate change, such as the restoration of forests and peatlands, as essential components of climate mitigation and adaptation. The Commitments also stress the role of Indigenous peoples and women from local communities as critical to successfully implementing the Paris Agreement.

Read the full article

Categories: Environment in the Media, Events, News Tags:

New WIOMSA Books for Sale: Get Your Copies Now!

September 8th, 2016 No comments

Two new publications “Sharks and Rays : A Field Guide to Common Elasmo Branchs of East Africa” and “Mangroves of the Western Indian Ocean: Status and Management” are now available for sale online at the WIOMSA Store. Orders of the publications can be made by clicking the  following link and then clicking purchase of books.









Fare Thee Well Taki: the sun sets on one of WIOMSA’s most loved legends!

September 1st, 2016 6 comments

???????????????????????????????It is with deep sorrow and personal regret that we announce the death of Mohammed Taki Jaffer or Mr. Jaffer as he was popularly known in WIOMSA circles. Mr. Jaffer passed away after a short illness, early on Wednesday morning. Mr. Jaffer will be sorely missed by all those who knew him. He was a special, one of a kind individual, with a warm heart, a big smile, a penchant for jokes, and a wise word for everyone.

Though retired from WIOMSA, now at the age of 82, Mr. Jaffer never missed a day in the WIOMSA office, arriving daily at 10 am to assist with accounting as requested, read the newspaper, catch up on emails and generally check on his colleagues at the Secretariat. He will be remembered as a sage, a well read individual, savvy on political discourse and a person whose thirst for learning new things was never ending. He taught himself to how use a computer, learnt the mechanism of emails, and only last year mastered the use of his smart phone within months of its purchase! Each of us not only grieves at the passing of a tremendous individual but also for the loss that his family has suffered.


Mr. Jaffer was the first WIOMSA accountant from 1995 to 2001 when he retired. He leaves behind his wife, Zehra Jaffer Mohammed, a son Nasser Mohammed, a daughter in law and two grand children.

May His Soul Rest in Eternal Peace!

Categories: News Tags: