New Partnership: BCSS Becomes Member of Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA)

BCSS has partnered with the Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA) in the form of an institutional membership, supporting the organisation’s mission to promote marine science, conservation, education, and sustainable development of marine environments and its resources. As a regional, non-profit organisation, WIOMSA has been dedicated to supporting all aspects of marine sciences in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) region since its founding in 1993.

Being a global hotspot for a large number of endemic and threatened species, the WIO region is recognised for its rich marine biodiversity, making its socio-economic value high. The region embraces Mozambique, South Africa, Kenya, Somalia, Tanzania, Madagascar, Comoros, Seychelles, Mauritius and Réunion – covering pivotal seascapes for marine sciences and conservation.

A humpback whale flukes their tail in the Bazaruto Archipelago, part of the Western Indian Ocean. Photo by Maeva Terrapon

The area is home to numerous diverse marine environments, providing food security and livelihoods for large parts of its population. Besides, the countries host vast swatches of coastal blue carbon ecosystems, such as mangroves, seagrass, and mudflats, which capture large amounts of carbon and therefore play an active role in the fight against climate change. True for most marine environments, existence of threats such as overexploitation, climate change and habitat destruction ignite the urgency for more scientific research and conservation efforts to ensure the stability of the resources.

Preparing a CTD sensor for installation in the Bazaruto Archipelago’s waters. BCSS acts as a host, logistics provider and scientific implementer on the ground for the ReMoTURB project, an initiative focusing on strengthening fisheries and food security in Mozambique. Read our article.

The Western Indian Ocean region (source: Blue Nature Alliance in partnership with WIOMSA)

Hosting the first African permanent Ocean Observatory focusing on multi-ecosystem time series, BCSS contributes to the scientific data that is needed to better understand marine ecosystems in the WIO. By connecting to fellow WIOMSA members, BCSS hopes to bring valuable scientific insights, knowledge and support to the table. The team is looking forward to exchange ideas and learn from other members and hopes to form beneficial connections.

For questions about this article, please contact:
Iris Uijttewaal, Bazaruto Center for Scientific Studies

Bazaruto Center for Scientific Studies
Host of the first permanent Ocean Observatory focused on multi-ecosystem time series research in Africa, the Bazaruto Center for Scientific Studies (BCSS) was established in 2017 as in independent, non-profit organisation with a mission to protect and support the fragile ecosystems of the Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique. The research station is located on Benguerra Island, off the coast of Mozambique.

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