Reef protection stepped up a gear

3rd October 2007
News web pic 2_31.jpg
The Government of the Phillipines has tightened regulations to stop fishing on the country's largest coral reef, Reuters has reported.

The Apo Reef off the coast of Mindoro island was left with only a third of its previous coral cover in the early 1990s after intensive fishing - which sometimes involved the use of dynamite and cyanide - stripped the reef of life.

Although a fishing ban has been in place since 1994, it was not properly enforced and the rejuvenation of the 27,400 hectare reef has been slow.

Now, slowly, endangered species are beginning to return to the 'no-take zone' around the reef. Divers have recently spotted a school of scalloped hammerhead sharks, rays are becoming a more common sight, and even sperm whales have been seen - a sure sign that biodiversity levels are rising.

This article first appeared in the Ecologist October 2007


The Ecologist has a formidable reputation built on fifty years of investigative journalism and compelling commentary from writers across the world. Now, as we face the compound crises of climate breakdown, biodiversity collapse and social injustice, the need for rigorous, trusted and ethical journalism has never been greater. This is the moment to consolidate, connect and rise to meet the challenges of our changing world. The Ecologist is owned and published by the Resurgence Trust. Support The Resurgence Trust from as little as £1. Thank you. Donate here