In a groundbreaking move for marine conservation, Dominica has established the world’s first sperm whale reserve marking a significant step in safeguarding the habitat of these amazing creatures.
Scientists involved in its planning and establishment state that protection of almost 800 square kilometers will deliver benefits from the local to the global.
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries, Blue and Green Economy Roland Royer says this initiative is a reflection of the nation’s commitment to protect endangered marine species.
Dominica is home to over fifty (50) sperm whale families therefore, the new reserve will help sequester carbon and generate tourism income while also protecting a species under increased threat from human activity.
The Reserve will cover less than three percent of Dominica’s waters, which offers enough protection for the sperm whales. Restricting ships to only use designated corridors has been proven to not only reduce the risk of ship strikes and noise in an area sperm whales use for feeding and nursing, but it also reduces the risk of fishing gear being broken by large ships, which in turn protects the whales from entanglement and reduces replacement costs to fishers.
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries, Blue and Green Economy Roland Royer