This consists of efforts such as field surveys and census; ecology and natural history data gathering; species reintroductions; sharing of such information at national, regional and international levels through biodiversity, veterinary, conservation and other databases etc.
With an expert professional team and fully equipped on- and off-site facilities, the Marine Life Park team will respond to emergencies impacting marine biodiversity and coastal human communities that would include marine animal rescues, confiscations by enforcement agencies, marine mammal strandings, man-made disasters like oil slicks and chemical spills, and habitat destruction caused by natural calamities like floods and tsunamis.
Projects in this category target marine, coastal and freshwater ecosystems such as coral reefs, reef flats, sea grass meadows, lagoons, rocky shores, mangroves, mudflats, estuaries, rivers etc. Efforts could include ecological, biodiversity and population assessments; habitat protection and restoration; studying and mitigating the effects of human, environmental and climate change impacts.
Conservation education and awareness programmes are part of Marine Life Park’s conservation mission. Programmes may include issues about marine biodiversity, shark fins, unsustainable fishing, alternative seafood choices, mitigating man-made impacts on ecosystems, climate change effects on marine ecosystems and human coastal communities as well as sustainable green living.
Research efforts may include improvements and advances in animal management, husbandry, behavioural conditioning and veterinary practices, aquaculture of food fish, sustainable sources of managed species or for reintroduction efforts; as well as cell and tissue culture and banking for genetic and DNA studies etc.
Save the Irrawaddy Dolphin project
||Dolphin Island launched the first phase of its Save the Irrawaddy Dolphin project in April this year. The week-long rapid population assessment was conducted at Songkhla Lake along Thailand's eastern coastline where little is known about the number of Irrawaddy dolphins left, with the population being severely compromised from environmental degradation and lake vessel encroachment.
Dolphin Island deployed a two-man team led by Chief Veterinarian, Dr Alfonso Lopez, D.V.M., to provide technical, logistical and administrative expertise for this extensive assessment conducted through aerial and boat surveys. They will work alongside researchers from Chulalongkorn University Thailand led by investigator Dr Nantarika Chansue, Associate Professor at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine,
|as well as officials from Thailand's Department of Marine and Coastal Resources to develop a long-term rescue action plan for these endangered animals.
To find out more about the project, the team has published updates at www.dolphinisland.rwsentosablog.com. The report on initial findings is expected to be released in the third quarter of 2015.