The Nature Conservancy in conjunction with local partners publicly presented their strategy for conserving the coast that borders the Conservancy’s Valdivian Coastal Reserve in southern Chile. The new conservation plan aims to safeguard a host of marine resources, including the Loco or Chilean Abalone, a mollusk of high economic value for Chile.
Valdivia, April 22 2013. On the same day that the world celebrated Earth Day, The Nature Conservancy and local marine conservation non-profit Conservación Marina publicly presented a specially designed Conservation Plan for the coast that borders the Valdivian Coastal Reserve and that lies between the Chaihuín and Bueno Rivers in the province of Valdivia (see map).
The document was created after a year of investigations and defines several ways of protecting the fish and wildlife in this area, such as:
- The creation of a monitoring program
- Development of ecotourism
- Scientific research
- Sustainable fishing
- Promotion of environmental education and cultural values related to nature
The Plan also identified eight specific areas to be protected for their high productivity and for the benefits they provide for local people and wildlife. These include estuaries, kelp forests, the rocky coast sector, and the dunes and beaches. Together, these sites host a wide variety of marine species. The Plan also aims to conserve some key marine resources necessary for the subsistence and development of local livelihoods, including the sea urchin - already low in numbers - and the Loco or Chilean Abalone, one of the most important mollusks in the Chilean economy.
The Nature Conservancy works in conjunction with local governments and artisanal fishing associations to ensure the sustainable management of the fishing territories without disrupting the daily activities of the local community. With this program we seek to strengthen the community and guarantee an improvement in their quality of life by applying in marine environments the successful conservation work we have carried out in the Valdivian Coastal Reserve.