Funding Food for Conservation…
Visiting Ponta do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve and her surrounds today - you will find some restaurants and shops open, however the heart and soul of Ponta - the diving, the dolphining, the snorkelling, the surfing and kiting - and even the Maputo Special Reserving are all prohibited under the Level-3 State of Emergency SOE until June 30. Life for some has been put on hold as most lodges and activity centers, both on land and sea between Ponta do Ouro and Santa Maria remain closed.
The conservation area’s of the Ponta do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve, the Maputo Elephant Reserve and the Inhaca Biology area is roughly 2000km2. This unique bio-diversity hot spot which encompasses both land and sea has over the past 25 years become the jewel of Southern Mozambique famous for world class dolphin encounters, scuba diving and fishing. Times are however uncertain now as operators, local communities and Reserve Wardens prepare for months of no tourism.
Image L: Monkey trap
Image R: Vervet monkey entangled in rope
Image L: Samango monkey eating paw paw
Image R: Vervet monkey and child with freshly picked guavadillas
This closure will see an impact on terrestrial animals with monkeys, tortoises, birds and domestics being the target of a hungry population. With these issues prevalent in pre-CV19; during and post will only see this problem escalate. Although local administrations and government departments have been asked to join forces and feed the community - collaborations have been blocked with sustenance fishing no longer permitted off our own boats.
Image L: African green pigeon
Image R: Speckled Mousebirds
Image L: Bronze Mannikin
Image R: Purple crested lourie in flight
Foreign and local business communities have however taken it upon themselves to help - not only their own crews but the struggling populations within the area’s. Over Mtn 800 000 / R220K has been raised in donations from the private sector with funds pouring in from across the globe. Hundreds upon hundreds of food parcels have been distributed to those in need with thanks to the generous hearts of home and business owners, event organisers and visitors past and future. If there is one thing that is certain - people care and it is this care that will see conservation area’s survive.
Image L: Food parcel distribution Malongane - image credit unknown
Image R: Business owners Judy, Natalie and Meghan distributing in Ponta do Ouro. Image credit unknown
You can check out and link into one of the fund raisers below to help the Jewel of Southern Mozambique sustain herself through CV19. Click on the image or link below.