Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) as a Fisheries Management Tool for the Nassau Grouper (Epinephelus striatus) in Belize
thesisposted on 08.06.2021, 12:21 by Lisa S. Beneditti
The Nassau grouper, Epinephelus striatus, was once an important commercial fish species in the Caribbean, but is now considered commercially extinct throughout its range. Protection measures have included protection of adults via seasonal closures and spawning aggregation site reserves (SASRs). Marine protected areas (MPAs) are a promising fisheries management tool being used increasingly worldwide but are not specifically directed at the conservation of Nassau grouper. This thesis uses Belize as a case study location to determine how the established MPA network may contribute towards its protection. It was found that the Belize MPA network as a system may not contribute greatly, however, on an individual basis some MPAs contribute more to protection than others. Those MPAs which have characteristics most suitable for this species are Gladden Spit and Silk Cayes, Sapodilla Cayes, Bacalar Chico, Glovers Reef, Hol Chan, and South Water Caye Marine Reserves.