France and Eastern Caribbean collaborate on flying fish management study

Six Caribbean countries and the two French overseas territories of Martinique and Guadeloupe are collaborating on a project to regulate the flying fish fishery of the region.

According to Caribbean News Now, the Global Environment Facility-funded project, which began last year, consists of six sub-projects in the Eastern Caribbean countries of Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia, and Dominica, as well as the French islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe.

Named the Ecoystem Approach to Fisheries (EAF), the project is under the oversight of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) and has a focus on managing and conserving the culturally and economically significant fish, which is harvested by over 1,700 boats across the Eastern Caribbean countries and in Martinique, the news site said.

“We in the region are utilizing a common space and common living marine resource; therefore, we need to cooperatively manage these common interests,” CRFM Executive Director Milton Haughton told Caribbean News Now. “One of these common interests is the flying fish fishery, and the governance framework developed for the flying fish fishery could be scaled up and applied to other fisheries in the region.”

One of the aims of the EAF, is “to provide guidelines on how countries and [French] Overseas Territories participating in the flying fish fishery will collect and share data,” the report said. In addition, the consultants on the project will develop a template for use by the region in drawing up regulations for future data collection efforts. Information on vessels involved in the flying fish fishery will also be gathered, and new licensing arrangements for these vessels proposed.

The project will “support improved cooperation between the 17 CRFM member states and France on the management and conservation of shared living marine resources,” the website said.

The EAF is part of the larger Caribbean and North Brazil Shelf Large Marine Ecosystems (CLME+) Project.


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