Volume 57

Possible Paths to Co-managing the Sea Egg Fishery of Barbados

Parker, C.; Pena, M.
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Date: November, 2004

Pages: 115-128

Event: Proceedings of the Fifty Seventh Annual Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute

City: St. Petersburg, Florida

Country: USA


From the latter half of the 1980s and throughout the 1990s, consistently low stock sizes had effectively collapsed the fishery for the white sea urchin Tripneustes ventricosus (locally known as the sea egg) in Barbados. In 2001, the sea egg stock recovered to a level that had not been observed during the preceding two decades. Government authorities and scientists all agree that sustainability of the fishery can only be achieved through co-management arrangements that include fishers. The resource’s wide distribution around the island and ease of accessibility negates the possibility of adopting the small-scale community management model that has proved successful in the St. Lucia sea egg fishery. From the latter half of the 1990s, a number of govern-mental and non-governmental agencies have investigated the potential and means to co-manage this fishery. The outputs of projects, conducted during the last five years, which facilitated fisher participation in resource assessment and analysis and examined ways of establishing formal co-management arrangements for the Barbados sea egg fishery, are examined in this paper. The multi-phase Coastal Co-management Project (CORECOMP) commenced in 2001, implemented first by the Caribbean Conservation Association (CCA) and then the Centre for Resources Management and Environmental Studies (CERMES) of the University of the West Indies (UWI). As a result of these and other efforts, fisher participation in monitoring the status of the resource and in influencing management decisions to some degree has increased over the last five years. However, a formal co-management arrangement for this fishery remains elusive for reasons that are biophysical, socio-economic and institutional.

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