Spanning 1,430 km² of productive seascape and five islands off the coast of Mozambique, Bazaruto Archipelago encompasses terrestrial and marine habitats of unique ecological value.
The Bazaruto Archipelago National Park is the first marine reserve to fall under African Parks’ management. In 2017, the National Administration of Conservation Areas (ANAC) invited African Parks to manage its oldest national marine park, giving us the opportunity to protect this gem in the Indian Ocean. Declared a protected area in 1971, Bazaruto is made up of five islands, three of which are inhabited by over 6,500 people. The archipelago boasts iconic megafauna, including whales, sharks, sailfish, manta rays, dolphins, marlin and nesting marine turtles, as well as the region’s last viable population of dugong. The sheer beauty of this seascape, along with the diversity of wildlife, has made Bazaruto a globally sought-after tourism destination.
Historically, overuse of natural resources, illegal fishing practices and poorly regulated tourism activities have negatively impacted the area’s biodiversity and the livelihoods of those who live here. But over the last five years, the results of effective management have begun to crystallise and relationships with communities, tourism operators and government partners are helping to secure a more sustainable future for people and wildlife. The park’s management team has grown, infrastructure has improved, protection measures have been enhanced and illegal activities curtailed. A conservation-led economy is being bolstered through tourism, creating jobs and skills development.
Bazaruto is truly an emerging gem of the Indian Ocean and testimony to how an effective co-management agreement has lasting results for both people and the marine ecosystems on which they depend.
African Park’s focus is on strengthening conservation law enforcement to mitigate threats and build support for the park through community engagement and development. Continued conservation monitoring and research, infrastructural development and skills-based training to uplift the community and enhance the sustainability of the park. Help us maintain and strengthen this vital work in Bazaruto by donating to African Parks today.
In December 2017, African Parks signed a 25-year management agreement with ANAC to restore, develop and manage Bazaruto Archipelago National Park, and revitalise it to become one of the leading and most productive marine protected areas in eastern Africa.View Partners
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