Nature Seychelles has entered a new exciting phase in its decade-long reef restoration project carried out in the Marine Protected Area of Cousin Island Special Reserve. The NGO has received a grant from the Adaptation Fund through UNDP and the Government of Seychelles as part of a large regional project with Mauritius and is set to leap-frog into the third and next level of its restoration program. This new project will look at novel techniques from overseas in coral genetics and reproduction.
It has long been the tradition of Nature Seychelles to offer attachments to young Seychellois on Cousin Island Special Reserve as part of its EnvironMentor Program. From January to March this year, it was the turn of three students from the Seychelles Tourism Academy (STA) to get a taste of nature conservation on the island.
Local people are passionate and willing to contribute to the conservation and management of marine protected areas (MPAs) in their locality. This was revealed at an interactive meeting with residents of Port Glaud held on 30 March at Cap Ternay, the first of a series aimed at building community awareness and involvement in the conservation and management of the Port Launay and Baie Ternay marine national parks.
Nature Seychelles has helped restore forests on several Seychelles islands. This saved critically endangered birds, enhanced eco-tourism, and increased skills in ecosystem restoration. The restoration and sustainable management of forests has helped address the climate-change and biodiversity crises and has provided goods and services for sustainable development in Seychelles.
It has been long since the normally busy shores of Cousin Island Special Reserve have seen any form of tourism activity. But now, ahead of the possible re-opening of the country's borders, the island that belongs to birds is preparing to receive visitors and opened as of 22 March 2021.