Saturday, March 25, 2017

Branson in Little Cayman to see groupers

Cayman Reporter
March 17, 2017

Sir Richard Branson was in Little Cayman and witnessed a massive spawning aggregation of Nassau groupers and was impressed.
Branson made the dive off the coast of Little Cayman with Dr. Guy Harvey, the Cayman Islands Department of Environment and Reef Environmental Education Foundation to help spread the word about protecting this critically endangered iconic fish.
Each year after the February full moon, thousands of Nassau groupers gather off the west end of Little Cayman to spawn. This concentration of fish in one area makes them an easy target for fishermen and consequently, populations of Nassau grouper have become overfished and devastated throughout the Caribbean.
REEF and the DoE have worked for 15 years to monitor and protect this species and aggregation site. Because of the ongoing research programme, education, and implemented legislation including a five-month closed season and catch limits, scientists consider there is a positive trend in the recovery of the species.
Branson, who described the experience in a blog, visited Little Cayman to see if the scientific work and conservation effort could be exported to other islands.
Read the whole story here.