The Oceans Without Borders Benguerra Island team came to the rescue of the local house reef

the Oceans Without Borders Benguerra Island team

In April, the Oceans Without Borders Benguerra Island team came to the rescue of the local house reef. In mid-March, tropical cyclone Filipo made landfall in Mozambique, bringing torrential rainfall, sustained winds of up to 116 km/h and heavy storm-surge. As a result, substantial amounts of debris, including tree trunks, branches and roots, were washed onto the Benguerra Island House Reef, smothering and damaging the coral. Their team spent a week diving and clearing these multiple deposits from the reef, before moving all this flotsam out of the water to a beach collection point for removal.

Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago National Park seascape

Oceans Without Borders their increased collaborative monitoring of critical habitats and iconic species within Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago National

It’s fair to say that for Oceans Without Borders their increased collaborative monitoring of critical habitats and iconic species within Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago National Park seascape has got off to an exciting start. This endangered hawksbill turtle was a wonderful find in the mangroves at spring high tide on Santa Carolina Island in this protected region. While reef fish are known to go into the mangroves, the presence of these turtles is a clear indicator of the connectivity between the key habitats of seagrass beds, coral reefs and mangroves. Yet another proof point that oceans really do have no borders. Learn more HERE.

Meet Washington Dennis

Oceans Without Borders' Washington Dennis

Meet Washington Dennis: marine scientist and new Oceans Without Borders Mnemba Island Project Officer. Washington’s passion for the ocean is tangible. “As a marine scientist, I emphasise that advocating for ocean conservation isn’t solely for the marine ecosystem, it’s essential for human welfare.” He firmly believes that collaboration is key to marine conservation, and elevating communities’ livelihoods a top priority. Not only is Washington an advanced diver with a BSc. Honours in Aquatic Science and Fisheries from the University of Dar es Salaam, but his project experience includes mangroves, coral restoration and fishery sustainability. Welcome Washington! Click HERE to read more

“Restoring the balance” is the focus of Oceans Without Borders

owb-restoring the balance-2

“Restoring the balance” is the focus of Oceans Without Borders five-year marine conservation strategy across the Mnemba Island seascape, in collaboration with andBeyond, local stakeholders, and Zanzibar’s Ministry of Blue Economy & Fisheries. January 2024 finds their island team ramping up the coral nursery to accelerate Mnemba House Reef’s restoration, and develop more artificial sites that will not only support local reef rehabilitation, but also stimulate revenue for island communities. The team will be conducting reef health and biodiversity monitoring at key sites, using the additional resource of “BRUVS” (Baited Remote Underwater Video Systems) on reefs deeper than 50 m. Click HERE to learn more.

Tiny coral “Christmas worms”

Coral Christmas Worms

It’s all in the detail. Even these tiny coral “Christmas worms” are intrinsic to the rich complexity of a coral reef ecosystem. Looking back on the many community and conservation milestones of 2023, the team at Oceans Without Borders have so much to be grateful for. A huge thank you to everyone whose relentless support has been instrumental to each of these achievements. The team also recognise the role played by each individual in protecting our oceans. Here’s to a year of endless possibilities and opportunities.

Dr Sylvia Earle visits andBeyond Benguerra Island

Dr Sylvia Earle visited andBeyond Benguerra Island

Unforgettable; when Dr Sylvia Earle visited andBeyond Benguerra Island and met with our OWB team. In 2009, Dr Earle, renowned marine oceanographer, founded Mission Blue: a global platform dedicated to the preservation of “Hope Spots” – seascapes recognised for their immense ecological value. Benguerra Island lies within the Inhambane Seascape, which was declared a Hope Spot in January 2022. Oceans Without Borders is expanding our marine conservation work around Benguerra to support African Parks; focusing on critical habitats and iconic species. The data gathered will inform sustainable conservation practices and decisions. Learn more

The hope to tag 5 female loggerhead sea turtles with satellite tags

our Oceans Without Borders Benguerra Island Community & Conservation rangers, are hoping to tag 5 female loggerhead sea turtles with satellite tags

In the coming weeks, it will be all-night action on Benguerra Island from 18:00 – 06:00 as a dedicated group, including two of our Oceans Without Borders Benguerra Island Community & Conservation rangers, are hoping to tag 5 female loggerhead sea turtles with satellite tags. These devices will provide valuable insights into their movements when they return to the sea after nesting. Fishing nets pose a significant threat to these vulnerable turtle populations; a better understanding of their movements will enable us to work proactively with local communities to avoid these identified location areas where the turtles frequent. Read more HERE.

OWB teams competed in this year’s culminating 21 km Wildlife Ranger Challenge

Ocean Talks sponsored by OFF

The smiles of our Vamizi Island ‘Coconut Crabs’ marine ranger team say it all: “Mission accomplished!”. On 16 September, OWB teams from Vamizi, Benguerra and Mnemba Islands competed in this year’s culminating 21 km Wildlife Ranger Challenge, which closes for donations on 28 September. This annual event, undertaken by rangers for rangers, has generated significant grant funding for our marine programmes. In the collective spirit of this fundraiser, giving to one is giving to all: a portion of each donation goes into the collective Rangers Fund, for the benefit of every participating team. Click HERE to support, donations close on 29th September.

Meet Gilda Da Madelena Luis; a valued member of the OWB

Ocean Talks sponsored by OFF

Meet Gilda Da Madelena Luis; a valued member of the OWB Benguerra Island Community & Conservation marine rangers, Mozambique. Gilda’s motivation to apply for this position was inspired by another woman who had made a similar career choice. She believes that “the more young women we can engage with on the importance of conservation, and the options of this as a career, the better.” She has taken to her diverse role and responsibilities like the proverbial duck to water. As she grows from strength to strength, she looks forward to empowering other young women with a voice in conservation. Learn more HERE.

OWB Community & Conservation ranger team

Ocean Talks sponsored by OFF

With 6 turtle and star-shaped reef constructs now securely in place, and 1,523 coral colonies transplanted onto these structures by the OWB Community & Conservation ranger team, this new artificial reef site is set to flourish. All of these coral colonies were “home-grown” by the team in the flourishing coral nursery that they established at Mnemba Island House Reef, Zanzibar, in October 2021. A further 1,580 coral colonies from this nursery are regenerating degraded local reef sections in this multi-phased project that is going from strength to strength. Learn more here.