The Marine Protected Area is defined as a “No-Take Zone”, an area where no form of extractive activity such as fishing, hunting, logging, mining, and drilling is allowed.
As we measure the efficiency of our methods and the Marine Protected Area, we use photo-transect surveys and post-analysis to evaluate the state of degradation and health of the reefs. We are committed to improving the resilience of ecosystems (e.g. coral reefs) and increasing fish stock in the area.
It is our priority to protect and restore them. Some parts of the reefs had suffered damages that led to extremely low coral cover and structure loss, causing resiliency to be very low or even inexistent.
To accelerate and facilitate resiliency, we use two (2) methods of active restoration depending on the conditions of the reef (see Pavement Attachment below). In any case, we only collect and fix unstable or broken fragments, which means healthy colonies remain undisturbed and no fragments are collected from them.
Sulu Reef Prosthesis – SRP
The SRP modules serve as structural prostheses on coral reefs, where mortality is high and structural strength was lost. We only focus on broken or unstable reef colonies, and help these regrow by attaching them to the SRP. This way, we are able to restore damaged parts of the reef while keeping healthy and stable colonies undisturbed.
We have three (3) SRP models of different sizes. We manufacture all our SRPs on Pangatalan Island by using a unique and durable steel moulder. Produced in two pieces, the SRP has steel bar supports placed on the sides and tops to facilitate the fixation of coral fragments. Assembling is then made underwater.
When we first took over the island, we found some areas in a deplorable state with 33% (or 0.85% of 2.5% hectares) of the mangroves within PIMPA depleted.
Today, our mangroves on Pangatalan Island are diversified with 12 species of plants. They contribute to regenerating the fish population as we regularly observe juveniles from various species: parrot fish, snappers, wrasses, cardinals, and others.
To facilitate mangrove regrowth, we collect propagules around the island and plant them in suitable areas to restore. To date, 6,000 units have been planted from different species such as Rhisophora sp. and Sonneratia sp.
Over the years, we have already planted 39,000 plants from 52 species. This is an ongoing effort to ensure the healthy growth of vegetation and restructuring of soil.
- Visitors: We share our values and knowledge with all our guests, so they can understand and contribute to our mission.
- Team members: We work with partners and volunteers to implement our activities and spread the word in their social groups.
- Community: We collaborate with different groups to share and bring awareness to a wider audience (schools, diver centers, etc.).
- Institutional support: We work with authorities as part of the Marine Environmental Protection (MAREP) squadron and with Pangatalan Island as a Philippine Coast Guard Auxiliary base.