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Patrol Update from Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority up to March, 2021 by Allan Ramandey* & Nikka Gunadharma**

Dear readers, as usual, through this article we would like to inform you regarding the patrol activities – or Jaga Laut – conducted by the Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority*** for the period of March, 2021.

During that month, a total of 76 patrols were conducted. Out of those days, 29 violations were found in these following categories: 11 zoning violations from fisheries activities caught in 4 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs); 14 entrance fee-related violations found in 4 MPAs; 2 cases of alleged, destructive fishing activities in 2 MPAs; 1 case of alleged, illegal fishing activity in 1 MPA, and; 1 case of coral reefs damaged due to illegal fishing activity in 1 MPA.

As mentioned in our previous article, due to the increasing numbers of entry fee-related violations, in March 2021 the Head of Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority had issued an official memorandum for 10 liveaboards whom, repetitively, caught by the Jaga Laut without entrance fee’s cards. This memorandum was responded in positive manner by most of the mentioned liveaboards. You can also read our article related to the latest, entrance fees applies in Raja Ampat here.

Here are some of the highlights for Jaga Laut’s activities during the course of March, 2021.

Asia and Ayau Islands MPA

Two violations were found during the 11 patrols conducted by the Jaga Laut from Asia and Ayau Islands MPA in March, 2021.

On the 09th of March, 2021, a local fishermen was caught fishing within the Core Zone of the MPA. Prior to directing this particular fishermen to sail away from the mentioned zone, information was provided and Resources Use Monitoring (RUM) data was collected.

Another violation was found on the 18th of March, 2021, when a fishing vessel from beyond Raja Ampat was caught agrounded. The day after, 19th of March, a joint team consisted of personnel from Raja Ampat’s Water and Air Police Unit, accompanied by representatives of Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority conducted a follow-up investigation related to the incident.

Photo 1. Fishing boat agrounded was caught in Asia and Ayau Islands MPA during a patrol on the 18th of March, 2021. A follow-up survey was conducted the day after. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Photo 2. A joint team consisted of Raja Ampat’s Water and Air Police Unit and representatives from Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority prior departing for survey on the 19th of March, 2021. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Mayalibit Bay MPA

From the eight patrols conducted by the Jaga Laut from Mayalibit Bay MPA in February, no violations were found during the course of March, 2021, RUM data was collected from all the fisheries-related activities encountered this month.

Photo 3. One of Jaga Laut’s personnel taking notes for RUM data collection on the 24th of March, 2021. Uniquely, all of the fishing activities found that day were all women and children. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Dampier Strait MPA

Dampier Strait MPA’s Gam and Yenaduak monitoring posts conducted a combined of 18 patrol days in March, 2021. Rangers from Gam Monitoring Post encountered a total of 4 violations, while Yenaduak’s rangers found 5 violations this month.

On the 05th, 08th, and 15th of March, 2021, Jaga Laut from Gam’s Monitoring Post caught one liveaboard in each of those days, and without entrance fee. Subsequent to explanation related to zoning system in Raja Ampat MPA and related regulations provided by the marine park’s authority, all liveaboards agreed to purchase the entrance fee.

Photo 4. The Head of Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority was providing information related to zoning system in Raja Ampat to one of the liveaboards encountered during a patrol in Dampier Strait MPA on the 15th of March, 2021. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Dampier Strait MPA’s Yenaduak Monitoring Post found three violations on the 11th of March, 2021. Two violations were zoning system-related, when two fishing boats caught fishing in Tourism and Food Security Sub-zone. Both fishing boats were directed to sail away from the mentioned sub-zone, and RUM data were collected.

Another violation encountered that day was, alleged, used of fish bombs within the Core Zone by a fishing boat recognized to be from an area in Municipality of Sorong. Rangers tried to chase the mentioned fishing boat from a safe distance until it managed to slip away. Documentation of the catch was taken, and the incident was then reported to authorized, law enforcer.

Photo 5. Fishing boat that, allegedly, used fish bombs encountered during a patrol in Dampier Strait MPA. Personnel of Jaga Laut recognized that this boat came from Ram Island in the Municipality of Sorong. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Misool Islands MPA

Rangers from Misool Islands MPA conducted a total of 10 patrols during March, 2021, and caught six violations. Zoning violations from fisheries activities were found respectively on the 10th (1 violation), 16th (2 violations), and 22nd (1 violation). Rangers provided information related to zoning system within Misool Islands MPA, collected RUM data, then directed them to sail away from the mentioned zone.

Photo 6. One of the zoning violations encountered on the 16th of March, 2021, by the Misool Islands MPA’s rangers. A fishing vessel, acting as collector, was caught within the Tourism and Food Security Sub-zone. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Two other violations were related to entrance fee when two liveaboards caught without entrace fee’s cards on the 08th and 16th of March, 2021, respectively. Rangers provided information related to the obligatory entrance fee for any tourism activities within Raja Ampat Islands’ MPAs, then coordinate representatives from the mentioned liveaboards with the marine park authority’s office in Waisai.

Photo 7. Jaga Laut’s personnel from Misool Islands MPA was taking notes for RUM data collection from one of the liveaboards encountered on the 16th of March, 2021. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Kofiau–Boo Islands MPA

Eight patrols were conducted by Jaga Laut from Kofiau-Boo Islands MPA in March, 2021. No violations were found this month, and RUM data were collected from all the MPA’s users.

Photo 8. One of the findings of Kofiau-Boo Islands MPA’s rangers during their last day of patrol in March, 2021. This is the second consecutive month where no violations were found within the mentioned MPA. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

Fam Islands MPA

Jaga Laut from Fam Islands MPA conducted a total of nine patrols during March, 2021, and encountered a total of four violations on the 12th, 17th, and 23rd respectively. Two entrance fee-related violations were found in Piaynemo during a patrol on the 12th of March, 2021, when two speedboats from Waisai filled with tourists without entrance fee. Both speedboats were reprimanded and coordinated to purchase entrance fee from the marine park authority’s office in Waisai.

Photo 9. One of the speedboats caught in Piaynemo, Fam Islands MPA, without entrance fee. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

On the 17th of March, 2021, Fam Islands MPA’s rangers found one fishing boat allegedly used fish bombs, but managed to chased it away and took documentations. The incident has been coordinated to marine park authority’s office in Waisai, which then reported it to the authorized, law enforcer.

While on the 23rd of March, 2021, a fishing boat from an area within the Municipality of Sorong was caught fishing within the Tourism and Food Security Sub-zone; rangers directed it to sail away from the sub-zone subsequent to providing information related to Fam Islands MPA’s zoning system and collecting RUM data.

Photo 10. Fishing boat from Municipality of Sorong caught by Jaga Laut from Fam Islands MPA. The fishermen claimed that he already had permission to fish within the area from one of the community leaders in Saukabu Village. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

West Waigeo Islands Marine Reserve

West Waigeo Islands Marine Reserve’s Jaga Laut conducted twelve patrols this month, and found a total eight violations – a rather busy month comparing to February, 2021. Seven of them were entrance fee-related violation.

The mentioned violation was caught on the 11th, 12th, 22nd, and 23rd of March, 2021, respectively. All incidents were encountered around the area of the monitoring post in Wayag. Rangers provided them with information related to the zoning system and regulation on the entrance fee, before coordinating them with the marine park authority’s office in Waisai to settle the issue.

Photo 11. One of the speedboats caught without entrance fee in West Waigeo Islands Marine Reserve’s Wayag Monitoring Post. The same speedboat was caught doing the same violation back in January, 2021, and December, 2020. (Photo by: BLUD UPTD Pengelolaan KKP Kepulauan Raja Ampat/2021).

However, rangers decided to ‘kicked out’ one of the speedboat operators caught this month and banned them from conducting any tourism activities in Wayag, as they were repetitively caught doing the same violations, and will keep doing so until they can provide the rangers with entrance fee.

 Table 1. Table of Patrol Count from Seven MPAs in Raja Ampat from May 2020 to March 2021.

MonthAsia and Ayau Islands MPAMayalibit Bay MPADampier Strait MPAMisool Islands MPAKofiau – Boo Islands MPAFam Islands MPAWest Waigeo Islands Marine Reserve (Wayag)Total
Year: 2020
May44821061044
June7611577952
July76125325

40

August8696104649
September86104105649
October9813688961
November10815888865
December58147881060
Year: 2021
January5814989760
February1081988101073
March1181810891276

So, those were the updates from our March, 2021, activities. We will be back next month with updates for April, 2021 – hope to see you again then, dear readers.

 We sincerely hope this update would be useful for you. Thank you very much for your time, attention, and kind support. And as usual, stay happy and stay healthy.

*           Data and Information Staff for Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority

**         Raja Ampat Communication and Outreach Coordinator for Conservation International Indonesia

***        The official name for Raja Ampat’s Marine Park Authority is Badan Layanan Umum Daerah Unit Pelaksana Teknis Daerah (BLUD UPTD) Pengelolaan Kawasan Konservasi Perairan (KKP) Kepulauan Raja Ampat.

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