[Coral-List] Sustainable aquarium trade focused in source countries: Loreto, Baja California Sur, Mexico

Mary Luna mary at reefcheck.org
Mon Dec 10 14:36:23 EST 2007

Dear Dr. Kaufman,

The Mexican NGO Comunidad y Biodiversidad, along with the authorities of the
Loreto Bay National Park, the fishing cooperative Mujeres del Golfo, and
Reef Check are working together on implementing a rural development project
aimed at promoting habitat conservation and improving the local economy
through the marine aquarium trade.

We will be happy to discuss the project with you in more detail.

Best regards,

Mary Luna
Reef Check Foundation

PO Box 1057 (mail)
17575 Pacific Coast Highway
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272-1057 USA

Tel: 310-230-2371, 310-230-2360
Fax: 310-230-2376
Email: iyor2008 at reefcheck.org

Take an easy step to help the coral reefs of the world by signing the

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Sent: Sunday, December 09, 2007 9:00 AM
Subject: Coral-List Digest, Vol 54, Issue 9

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>   1. sustainable aquarium trade focussed in source countries
>      (Les Kaufman)
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> Message: 1
> Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2007 12:58:05 -0500
> From: Les Kaufman <lesk at bu.edu>
> Subject: [Coral-List] sustainable aquarium trade focussed in source
> countries
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
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> Happy holidays everybody.
> I am trying to construct the most realistic scenario possible for
> sustainable aquarium export businesses that bring income directly to
> people of modest means in the source country.  I"m aware of some
> limited experiments in French Polynesia, the Philippines, Taiwan,
> Australia, and Fiji.  These reflect a mix of larval capture/rear-out
> and local captive propagation, including live rock and invertebrate
> farming.   Three things I'm still looking for.  One is a business
> plan or analysis that explains the conditions under which this kind
> of enterprise is itself sustainable (as a business).  The second is a
> description of the product line and how it was successfully juggled
> so as to remain responsive to the market and keep revenue flowing.
> The third is a measure of the material and other benefits to the
> local community resulting from this business.
> Of course, there is a fourth conundrum here, the matter of how to
> strike a balance between benefits to inhabitants of coral reef
> nations, versus the wonderful efforts of aquarists and entrpreneurs
> in developed nations that has led to the ex situ production of many
> fishes and invertebrates.   Without this, the aquarium hobby is hard
> to grow.  If it takes over, the result is one more example of local
> people being disenfranchised from the benefits that flow from their
> own local natural resource base.
> I am not going into the business myself and have no wish to steal
> anybody's trade secrets.  The outstanding question is simply this:
> what would the marine aquarium trade look like, in detail, if it were
> truly serving the interests of people living local to the wild
> sources of the ornamental species.   The ultimate goal is to create a
> win-win for people and coral reefs.  The aquarium trade would
> automatically be a third winner, a success that would create positive
> feedback to coral reef conservation.
> If we manage to figure this all out, there is some chance for at
> least a little investment by conservation funders.
> Thanks to all those who have already been of assistance in this
> little crusade.
> Les
> Les Kaufman
> Professor of Biology
> Boston University Marine Program
> and
> Senior PI
> Marine Management Area Science
> Conservation International
> ?I know the human being and fish can coexist peacefully.?
> George W. Bush
> Saginaw, Michigan; September 29, 2000
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