Marine Protected Areas as a Method for Integrating Marine Resource Conservation and Fisheries Management in the Caribbean: Case study in Trinidad and Tobago, WI.

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. Marine Biology

First Advisor

Curtis Burney

Second Advisor

Joshua Feingold


This paper will examine the biological, environmental and socio-economic issues related to incorporating conservation efforts and objectives into the management ofCaribbeanfisheries using marine protected areas as a tool for limiting detrimental effects of fishing on surrounding marine ecosystems. The broad consensus has long been that there is sufficient evidence that marine ecosystems have been impacted by fishing. Associated modeling and several case studies have shown that the establishment of marine protected areas (MPA) can mitigate some of the adverse effects of fishing on these ecosystems, especially for overexploited populations like those in many parts of theCaribbean. In theory, the establishment of marine protected areas and reserves can help to maintain productive fisheries by protecting critical stocks within their borders. There is an increasing awareness of the need to maintain and restore marine resources in theCaribbeanwhile optimizing resource allocation for national economic growth and livelihood security. Maintaining ecosystem diversity, species diversity, directly impacted species, ecologically dependant species and trophic level balance are some of the important conservation objectives addressed that should be incorporated into fisheries management. Current issues and possible innovations to marine resource management in the waters of theGulfofPariain Trinidad, and theBuccooReefMarineParkin Trinidad’s twin island,Tobago, will also be explored. This paper hopes to reveal the limits to current approaches of resource management and conservation integration in fisheries management and explore innovations and deliberative processes that can support a more successful merging of the two utilizing MPA implementation throughout the Caribbean.

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