How will we manage the MPA?

achievING our objectives

Common octopus - Jude Brown
Common octopus - Jude Brown

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This section describes the actions we will take to achieve the MPA’s objectives

Boatswainbird Island - Nicola Weber
Boatswainbird Island - Nicola Weber

This involves not only preventing or restricting damaging activities that threaten the MPA but also restoring, improving, researching and sharing Ascension’s amazing marine environment.

The MPA is going to be around forever and it will be a long journey to achieve everything we want. In the first five years covered by this plan, we have focused on the actions that will achieve the greatest positive change to the MPA within our resources (more detail of how we determined this is given in the MPA Showing our Workings document). This means there are no actions linked to substantial threats such as ocean acidification and rising sea temperatures because we simply don’t have the management tools to address them. It also means ambitious aspirations to develop Ascension as a global science hub will have to be achieved in stages and the futuristic submarine laboratory complex will have to wait until the next phase.

Green turtle on Pan Am Beach - Matt Wall

The designation of the MPA was underpinned by sound science and this evidence-based approach is carried forward into the management of the site. Where possible we have designed management actions based on existing data and experience of what will be effective. However, we know we don’t have all the answers from the start so targets, monitoring and refinement of our management will be essential. How we will do this is described in the Monitoring and Evaluation section.

The actions are arranged so that they can be filtered to show those that contribute to achieving different strategic or operational objectives, the ones that counter specific threats to the MPA and those actions that help protect particular species and habitats. Alternatively, you can choose to see them all and realise how busy we will be for the next five years.

Action table

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Operational objective

Description

Establish a monitoring and evaluation regime such that all actions are monitored and outcome evaluation is built into annual workplans.

Outcomes

Adaptive management refines and improves management over time and ensures it is evidence-based and responsive to changing conditions.

Targets

Year 1: Implementation of the Monitoring, Evaluation and Research Strategy, with monitoring linked to all objectives and management actions initiated.

Year 5: Completed cycles of monitoring, evaluation and management refinement demonstrate effective adaptive approach in place.

Strategic objectives delivered

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

4b. Management actions are designed to deliver the MPA objectives, based on the best available information and subject to regular monitoring and review.

Priority

High

Description

Establish robust data management system to collate information from biological, socio-economic and enforcement monitoring

Outcomes

Databases required to collate and curate essential information are fit-for-purpose, adequately secure and have appropriate backup protocols in place. Procedures in place for dealing with sensitive information such as illegal fisheries compliance intelligence.

Targets

Year 1: Deficiencies in data management capacity and procedures identified.

Year 5: Robust data management processes in place and being followed by all MPA staff and collaborators. Data storage is secure

Strategic objectives delivered

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

4b. Management actions are designed to deliver the MPA objectives, based on the best available information and subject to regular monitoring and review.

Priority

Medium

Description

Implement ICCAT obligations for offshore waters, supply data on recreational catches and introduce minimum landing size for billfish into inshore fisheries legislation

Outcomes

Ascension achieves full compliance with ICCAT obligations across its entire EEZ.

Targets

Year 1: Establish catch reporting system including logbooks and associated information campaign for recreational fishermen

Year 5: Ascension achieving and reporting compliance with all ICCAT obligations. Catch data being supplied by at least 70% of recreational fishermen

Threats addressed

IUU fishing, poorly-managed recreational fishery, poorly-managed sports fishery

Strategic objectives delivered

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

4a. The Legal and operational framework for the MPA (Primary and secondary legislation, regulations, management plan) is fit-for-purpose and enforcement action is effective.

Habitats and species protected

Yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, green turtle, Galapagos shark

Priority

High

Description

MPA-related regulations and those in other pieces of domestic legislation that are relevant to the MPA are effectively enforced to ensure there is a high level of compliance and support amongst those using the MPA.

Outcomes

Major threats to the objectives of the MPA are successfully controlled through legislation. The Ascension community and people visiting the island are aware of and support the legislation.

Targets

Year 1: Regulations are drafted following consultation and introduced along with a public information campaign. MPA Officers are warranted and trained to carry out enforcement action. Remote surveillance of offshore zone effectively undertaken by Blue Belt Surveillance and Intelligence Hub (BBSIH).

Year 5: Detected infringement of the regulations is at a low level. Appropriate enforcement action is taken in all cases of infringement by either AIGCFD in the inshore zone and BBSIH in the offshore zone. There is a high level of support for enforcement activities amongst the island population.

Threats addressed

IUU fishing, poorly-managed recreational fishery, poorly-managed sports fishery, marine litter, spill incident, disturbance from tourism, development, mineral extraction

Strategic objectives delivered

1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

1b. Proxy objective: Surveillance, compliance and enforcement regime effectively detects all known threats to offshore ecosystems

4a. The Legal and operational framework for the MPA (Primary and secondary legislation, regulations, management plan) is fit-for-purpose and enforcement action is effective.

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, pelagic waters around seamounts, benthic habitats on seamounts, epipelagic ocean, mesopelagic ocean, bathypelagic ocean, hydrothermal vents, lower slopes of Ascension Island and seamounts, flat abyssal plains.

Green turtle, land crab, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern, rock hind grouper, moray eel, glasseye snapper, spiny lobster, endemic inshore fish species, Ascension goby, Galapagos shark, common octopus, shrimps of the anchialine pools, corals, sponges, coralline algae, bryozoan, bigeye tuna, yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, silky shark, rainbow runner, bluntnose sixgill shark, Lophelia coral, humpback whale, blue shark.

Priority

High

Description

Build on governance structures established at MPA designation to ensure there is strong leadership, accountability and involvement of the island community and other key stakeholders in decision making.

Outcomes

MPA governance structure and decision-making processes are clear and involve the island community, scientific experts and other stakeholders.

Targets

Year 1: MPA governance arrangements have been agreed by the Ascension Island Council. Scientific Advisory Committee established.

Year 5: Governance structures are established and demonstrated input into annual setting of workplans and 5 year review of Management Plan.

Threats addressed

Low public support for the MPA and marine conservation

Strategic objectives delivered

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

4b. Management actions are designed to deliver the MPA objectives, based on the best available information and subject to regular monitoring and review.

4c. The Ascension Island community is effectively engaged in MPA governance structures and benefits equitably from management decisions.

Priority

High

Description

Assess and preferentially target sources of long-term secured income.

Outcomes

Generate income for managing the MPA and move towards financial independence and self-sufficiency. Long-term security of funding for core management priorities.

Targets

Year 1: Produce sustainable financing strategy

Year 5: Reduce reliance on UK Government funding to less than 33% of total MPA management costs

Strategic objectives delivered

4. To achieve effective governance and management of the MPA that is transparent and underpinned by sustainable financial and human resources

Operational objectives delivered

4d. Human and financial resources are secured to deliver effective management

Priority

High

Description

Undertake an engagement campaign aimed at the global community to raise awareness and support for the Ascension MPA and by extension the island.

More detail is provided in the Public Engagement Strategy

Outcomes

The unique biodiversity of Ascension and the work being done to protect it reaches a global audience generating public support. Potential funders and collaborators can see the work being done in the Ascension MPA and the potential for further innovative management and research.

Targets

Year 1: Public Engagement Strategy initiated including at least 50 social media posts produced and two videos created.

Year 5: Public Encouragement Strategy fully implemented including at least 150 social media posts and six videos created.

Threats addressed

Low public support for the MPA and marine conservation

Strategic objectives delivered

3 To promote scientific research and share knowledge about Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity in order to encourage support for marine conservation locally and internationally

Operational objectives delivered

3a. The Ascension Island MPA becomes a world-renowned site for the scientific study of marine ecosystems

3b. Ascension becomes an active and influential member of international networks of MPA managers, and initiates and participates in collaborative projects

3d. The Ascension MPA and the conservation and scientific work being undertaken reaches a global audience leading to increased political and financial support

Priority

High

Description

Undertake a public engagement campaign that aims to increase levels of knowledge and interest in the MPA amongst the Ascension population.

More detail is provided in the Public Engagement Strategy

Outcomes

A greater level of awareness of the MPA and marine conservation amongst the island community leads to higher levels of compliance and generates new ideas for better management.

Local stakeholders feel involved in the MPA process and young people on Ascension feel empowered to contribute to global marine conservation efforts.

Targets

Year 1: All priority actions in the Public Engagement Strategy initiated including a marine festival, visitor centre, school trips, press articles and social media posts.

Year 5: Public Engagement Strategy fully implemented. At least 200 members of the Ascension community participate in events linked to the MPA.

Threats addressed

Low public support for the MPA and marine conservation

Strategic objectives delivered

3. To promote scientific research and share knowledge about Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity in order to encourage support for marine conservation locally and internationally

Operational objectives delivered

3c. Every person on Ascension is aware of the MPA and its purpose

Priority

High

Description

Develop a ‘promotional package’ for visiting scientists to promote Ascension as a research hotspot. Develop facilities for visiting researchers including field equipment, lab upgrade and accommodation. Provide a data collection service for institutions that have research projects that are consistent with the MPA objectives.

Outcomes

Increased number and diversity of collaborations with research institutions that generate income for the island, improve knowledge of Ascension’s marine environment and raise the island’s international profile. Ascension becomes directly involved in innovative research projects and acquires a reputation for being a research ‘hot-spot.’

Targets

Year 1: Promotional package completed and distributed to all UK and relevant international academic institutions. Identify gaps in provision for visiting researchers

Year 5: Facilities developed to meet the main needs of researchers. Legal and insurance procedures to lease facilities and equipment to visiting organisations established. Data collection service in place and being used by external partners.

Strategic objectives delivered

3. To promote scientific research and share knowledge about Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity in order to encourage support for marine conservation locally and internationally

Operational objectives delivered

3a. The Ascension Island MPA becomes a world-renowned site for the scientific study of marine ecosystems

Priority

Medium

Description

Regulations and best practice guidance put in place governing the conduct of sports fishing and ecotourism businesses. Business licence renewal linked to compliance. Regulations and guidelines on avoidance of disturbance to wildlife provided with employment contracts and entry permits and publicised through videos, briefings, leaflets and signs at key locations.

Outcomes

Sportsfishing and tourist activities are conducted sustainably without damaging stocks or disturbing non-target species. Only businesses that adhere to regulations are licensed to operate. Widespread awareness of, and compliance with, regulations and guidance.

Targets

Year 1: Inshore Fisheries legislation covering sports fishing operations drafted and enacted. Review of Business Permit process. Videos, briefing presentations and designs for leaflets and signs produced

Year 5: Best practice guidance documents for sports fishing and ecotourism produced via stakeholder consultation. Signs present at all main tourist areas. Leaflets available at key sites for visitors Video shown at arrivals hall and cinema. Leaflet included with all contract packs.

Threats addressed

Poorly-managed sports fishery

Disturbance from tourism

Strategic objectives delivered

2. To promote the sustainable development of social and economic activities in the MPA that are compatible with protection of the marine environment

Operational objectives delivered

2d. Ascension is recognised as one of the world’s best destinations to enjoy responsible sports fishing and ecotourism activities that have no negative impact on the behaviour or health of protected species

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, green turtle, land crab, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern, Galapagos shark

Priority

High

Description

Depending on outcome of ‘Future of Ascension’ discussions, develop tourism growth strategy. Employ a tourism development officer to lead an online marketing campaign and provide on-island business development support.

Outcomes

Coordinated approach to creating and marketing a tourist offer that maximises the potential of Ascension’s marine environment to attract tourists. People living on Ascension are supported to develop businesses that retain revenue from marine resources on-island.

Targets

Year 1: Establish scope of Tourism Development Strategy in consultation with Ascension Island Council.

Year 5: If appropriate, Tourism Growth strategy produced and implemented. Tourist development officer employed by AIG. Marketing strategy results in at least 300 tourists per year visiting Ascension. Support at least three island-based businesses to develop sports fishing and ecotourism products

Threats addressed

Low public support for the MPA and marine conservation

Strategic objective delivered
  1. To promote the sustainable development of social and economic activities in the MPA that are compatible with protection of the marine environment
Operational objectives delivered

2d. Ascension is recognised as one of the world’s best destinations to enjoy responsible sports fishing and ecotourism activities that have no negative impact on the behaviour or health of protected species

2e. A significant proportion of revenue from sports fishing, ecotourism and other economic activities in the MPA is retained on the island

Priority

Medium

Description

Conduct regular volunteer litter clearance events to prevent the accumulation of marine plastics and other debris. This will be done around beaches and on SCUBA in shallow water habitats.

Outcomes

Beaches and coastal areas are kept free of litter. The Ascension community becomes involved in positive action to protect the MPA.

Targets

Year 1: Four beach cleans involving a minimum 80 people undertaken

Year 5: The four most popular beaches are cleaned every six months. Other sites cleaned annually. Two dive cleans undertaken at popular fishing sites each year. In total, a minimum of 120 people involved.

Threats adressed

Marine litter

Low public support for the MPA and marine conservation

Strategic objective delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objective delivered

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, green turtle, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern

Priority

High

Description

Implement the Biosecurity Strategy and associated legislation that establish inspections of vessel hulls and ballast water records, surveillance monitoring and measures to reduce the risk of non-native species introductions to Ascension.

Outcomes

The risk of introductions of new non-native species to marine and coastal habitats on Ascension is minimised through pre-border prevention measures and the interception or early detection of species that do arrive.

Targets

Year 1: Introduce biosecurity legislation including standards that all incoming vessels and imports must meet to gain entry clearance. Begin a system of risk-based inspection and regular surveillance monitoring.

Year 5: Biosecurity inspections are a routine part of entry procedures to Ascension. Entry and import standards have been refined based on experience. Regular surveillance monitoring is undertaken, including eDNA sampling and visual transects.

Threats addressed

New non-native species

Strategic objectives delivered

To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health

Operational objectives delivered

1c. No loss of species and no reduction of species abundance or ecosystem complexity in inshore areas

1f. No loss of genetically distinct sub-populations from inshore or offshore areas

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, rock hind grouper, moray eel, glasseye snapper, spiny lobster, black triggerfish, endemic inshore fish species, Ascension goby, common octopus, rock oyster, rustic rock snail, white-striped cleaner shrimp, shrimps of the anchialine pools, Ascension lightfoot crab, black longspined and rock boring oyster, bearded fireworm, corals, sponges, coralline algae, bryozoan

Priority

High

Description

Control invasive non-native species in coastal Nature Reserves to protect sea turtle and seabird nesting habitat and maintain the natural character of these sites. This will be achieved through the mechanical removal and chemical control of invasive plant species and the targeted poisoning of rodents around sensitive sites.

Outcomes

Spread of invasive non-native vegetation, in particular vigorous woody species, is halted or reversed. Rodent populations are reduced to below the level where they pose a significant threat to overall breeding success of seabirds and turtles.

Targets

Year 1: Complete eradication of non-native shrubs in buffer areas around all coastal nature reserves. Establish rodent monitoring protocol

Year 5: Extend buffer zones clear of non-native plant buffers further from coastal nature reserves. Targeted rodent control programme initiated around all coastal nature reserves

Threats addressed

Existing non-native species

Strategic objectives delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objectives delivered

1c. No loss of species and no reduction of species abundance or ecosystem complexity in inshore areas

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus

green turtle, land crab, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern

Priority

High

Description

Review and improve on-island pollution control measures and spill response capability through implementation of recommendations in the Marine Pollution Control Plan

Outcomes

Adequate control and mitigation measures in place for all known potential sources of pollution in the MPA

Targets

Year 1: Marine pollution control plan published and pollution response capability assessed by Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

Year 5: Adequate bunding and spill control measures in place around all fuel storage sites. Effective treatment and disposal of all waste effluents. Emergency spill containment plans and equipment in place.

Threats addressed

Marine litter

Land-based sources of pollution

Spill incident

Noise pollution

Strategic objectives delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objectives delivered

1c. No loss of species and no reduction of species abundance or ecosystem complexity in inshore areas

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, pelagic waters around seamounts, benthic habitats on seamounts, epipelagic ocean, mesopelagic ocean, bathypelagic ocean, hydrothermal vents, lower slopes of Ascension Island and seamounts, flat abyssal plains.

Green turtle, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern, rock hind grouper, moray eel, glasseye snapper, spiny lobster, black triggerfish, endemic inshore fish species, Ascension goby, Galapagos shark, common octopus, rock oyster, rustic rock snail, white-striped cleaner shrimp, shrimps of the anchialine pools, Ascension lightfoot crab, black longspined and rock boring oyster, bearded fireworm, corals, sponges, coralline algae, bryozoan, bigeye tuna, yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, silky shark, rainbow runner, bluntnose sixgill shark, Lophelia coral, humpback whale, blue shark, flying fish, plankton, vestimentiferan tubeworm, rimicaris shrimp, bathymodiolus mussels, grenadiers

Priority

High

Description

Introduce Inshore Fisheries Management Strategy underpinned by legislation. This will establish a stakeholder-led adaptive management system to regulate inshore fisheries based on data collected by fishermen and AIGCFD. A public information campaign will be introduced as part of the strategy.

Outcomes

Adaptive management system overseen by the Inshore Fisheries Advisory Committee that intervenes with effective and proportionate management measures to prevent stocks falling below sustainable levels. The fishing community understands the need for regulations and feels involved in the management process ensuring good compliance with the regulations.

Target

Year 1: Inshore Fisheries management system and legislation introduced following public consultation. Designs for information leaflets and signs completed

Year 5: Monitoring system in place for all exploited stocks. Catch data being supplied by at least 70% of fishermen. Annual assessments made on exploited stocks by the IFAC. Evidence-based management measures agreed and introduced if required. Information campaign in place.

Threats addressed

Poorly-managed recreational fishing

Poorly-managed sports fishing

Strategic objectives delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
  1. To promote the sustainable development of social and economic activities in the MPA that are compatible with protection of the marine environment
Operational objectives delivered

1c. No loss of species and no reduction of species abundance or ecosystem complexity in inshore areas

1e. Maintain the size distribution and age at maturity of species in inshore areas

1f. No loss of genetically distinct sub-populations from inshore or offshore areas

2a. People living on Ascension have access to recreational and fishing opportunities in the MPA that are equitably shared and enjoyed by the community

2b. As a minimum, no harvested fish stocks in inshore areas fall below maximum sustainable yield

2c. Ecological relationships between harvested, dependent and related species are maintained in inshore areas

Habitats and species protected

Rock hind grouper, moray eel, spiny lobster, glasseye snapper, common octopus, yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, rainbow runner, green turtle, Ascension frigatebird, sooty tern, Galapagos shark

Priority

High

Description

Conduct annual horizon scanning exercise to identify threats to the MPA not currently being managed. This will be achieved by reviewing activities underway or proposed in the Ascension MPA and the experience of other MPAs in the Blue Belt and Big Ocean networks. Newly-identified threats will be incorporated into management and monitoring workplans as appropriate.

Outcomes

New potential threats are identified and managed before they cause significant damage to the MPA.

Targets

Year 1: Threat assessment published

Year 5: Annual threat assessments published. Management and monitoring of all significant new threats incorporated into the next Annual Workplan and Monitoring Plan

Strategic objectives delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objectives delivered

1b. Proxy objective: Surveillance, compliance and enforcement regime effectively detects all known threats to offshore ecosystems

1d Proxy objective: Monitoring, regulation and management regime effectively tackles all known threats to inshore ecosystems

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, pelagic waters around seamounts, benthic habitats on seamounts, epipelagic ocean, mesopelagic ocean, bathypelagic ocean, hydrothermal vents, lower slopes of Ascension Island and seamounts, flat abyssal plains

Priority

High

Description

Establish effective surveillance, compliance and enforcement regime to prevent illegal commercial fishing within the MPA. This will use a risk-based approach and be based on remote satellite surveillance technology and enforcement via the flag state of offending vessels. More detail is provided in the Offshore Fisheries Compliance and Enforcement Strategy

Outcomes

Effective detection of suspect vessels and enforcement via ICCAT and Flag States deters illegal fishing in the MPA and prevents the unsustainable harvest of target and bycatch species.

Targets

Year 1: Surveillance system in operation based on risk assessment. Staff trained. System for assessing effectiveness of surveillance designed

Year 5: All cases of suspect vessels in the MPA are investigated and appropriate enforcement action taken. Evidence collection is always of the standard required for prosecution. Failures in investigations and enforcement are analysed and used to refine procedures and capture lessons learnt.

Threats addressed

IUU fishing in the MPA

Strategic objectives delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objectives delivered

1a. No loss of species and no reduction in species abundance or ecosystem complexity in offshore areas

1b. Proxy objective: Surveillance, compliance and enforcement regime effectively detects all known threats to offshore ecosystems

Habitats and species protected

Pelagic waters around seamounts, epipelagic ocean, mesopelagic ocean, bathypelagic ocean, bigeye tuna, yellowfin tuna, blue shark, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, green turtle, Ascension frigatebird, sooty tern, Galapagos shark, silky shark, humpback whale

Priority

High

Description

Remove the legacy concrete structures and invasive tree roots from Long Beach. Where feasible, remove barriers to the landward migration of beaches.

Outcomes

Long Beach is returned to a natural state of erosion and deposition with fewer obstacles for nesting turtles. Beaches are able to migrate landward where this is possible.

Targets

Year 1: Identify barriers to the landward migration of beaches.

Year 5 all concrete structures and invasive tree roots removed from Long Beach. Barriers to landward migration of beaches removed where this is feasible.

Threats addressed

Sea level rise

Development

Strategic objective delivered
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objective delivered

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, Green turtles

Priority

Medium

Description

Review the National Protected Areas Ordinance, Wildlife Protection Ordinance and Harbours Ordinance to ensure they are compatible with the MPA Regulations and effective at preventing damaging activities in the MPA

Outcomes

Up-to-date legislation and schedule with operational and legal capacity to enforce penalties

Targets

Year 1: NPA and Harbour Ordinances reviewed and deficiencies identified

Year 5: Updated Ordinances drafted as required

Threats addressed

Marine litter

Land-based sources of pollution

Noise pollution

Disturbance from tourism

Development

Strategic objectives addressed
  1. To conserve Ascension Island’s marine biodiversity, habitats and ecological functions for long-term ecosystem health
Operational objectives assessed

1c. No loss of species and no reduction of species abundance or ecosystem complexity in inshore areas

1g. No reduction in the extent or condition of key habitats

Habitats and species protected

Sandy beaches, coastal plateaus, rocky reefs, sandy substrate, rhodolith beds, intertidal pools, anchialine pools, pelagic waters around seamounts, benthic habitats on seamounts, epipelagic ocean, mesopelagic ocean, bathypelagic ocean, hydrothermal vents, lower slopes of Ascension Island and seamounts, flat abyssal plains.

Green turtle, land crab, Ascension frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern, rock hind grouper, moray eel, glasseye snapper, spiny lobster, endemic inshore fish species, Ascension goby, Galapagos shark, common octopus, shrimps of the anchialine pools, corals, sponges, coralline algae, bryozoan, bigeye tuna, yellowfin tuna, Atlantic blue marlin, wahoo, silky shark, rainbow runner, bluntnose sixgill shark, Lophelia coral, humpback whale, blue shark.

Priority

Medium