All you ever wanted to know about the marine protected area around the Gili islands

Did you know that Gili Islands are actually classed as a Marine Protected Area (MPA)? Not many people are aware that the Gili Islands are actually classed as a Marine Protected Area (MPA) called the Gili Matra Marine Park. Part of this is due to the fact that this map is hard to come by at the moment. So here you go, feel free to save and share this image and help us to create more awareness.

What is a Marine Protected Area?

They go by many names such as marine parks, aquatic parks, marine reserves. Basically anything that sounds like it offers some protection from fishing and other extractive industries like mining or oil drilling. Currently roughly 3% of the world’s oceans are protected in some way.

How old is the Gili Matra Marine Park and how big is it?

The Gili Matra Marine Park covers roughly 30 km2 as it actually covers the land too. It was created in early 1993. In this time the popularity of the Islands has skyrocketed and a whole diving industry has emerged. It was set up by the State Ministry of Demography and Environment which as seen many changes since and has merged with many other departments making the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.

What does the Gili Shark Conservation project do to protect the MPA?

Our mission is to help NGO Gili Matra Bersama to create the first recognized shark nursery ground in Indonesia by 2025. Shark nurseries are essential for the survival of many shark species, as they provide a safe and nurturing environment for juvenile sharks to grow and develop.  Here’s a comprehensive plan for establishing a successful shark nursery project:

1. Research and Planning:

  • We identify the target shark species in the area and their specific nursery requirements.
  • We collaborate with marine biologists, ecologists, and local stakeholders to gather essential data and insights.

2. Monitoring and Research:

  • We implemented a  monitoring program to track the health and development of the shark nursery
  • We collect data on shark behavior, growth rates, survival rates, and overall ecosystem health.
  • We use different technologies to gain insights into shark movement patterns within the MPA.

3. Stakeholder Engagement:

  • We collaborate with the local government, community and stakeholders to build support for the mission of NGO Gili Matra Bersama
  • We educate our community of locals, tourists and expats about the importance of shark conservation and the role of the nursery in maintaining healthy ocean ecosystems.

4. Regulation and Enforcement:

  • We work together with relevant authorities to establish regulations that protect the shark nursery from potential threats.

5. Long-term Sustainability:

  • We developed a long-term management plan for the shark nursery, including regular habitat maintenance and adaptive management strategies.
  • We ensured financial sustainability through ecotourism initiatives that generate funds for ongoing maintenance and research.

6. Scientific Collaboration:

  • We share research findings and best practices with the scientific community to contribute to the broader understanding of shark conservation.

Would you like to be part of our mission? Apply today for a research assistant program and contribute to the conservation of shark species and the overall health of the Gili Matra Marine Park.