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World's largest wildlife sanctuary created in the Tristan de Cunha island chain

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There’s more good news for nature.

Tristan da Cunha is a remote island chain in the South Pacific.  It’s 2,400 kilometres from the nearest land!

And Birdlife International report that Tristan da Cunha has been declared a Marine Protection Zone, one of the largest wildlife sanctuaries and a pristine wildlife haven.

The MPA is nearly three times the size of the UK.  MILLIONS of seabirds, fish and mammals Penguins and seals, threatened sharks and whales will all benefit.  25 seabird species breed here, four of which are unique to the islands and which are also globally threatened.   It includes the World Heritage Site of Gough Island which is a renowned albatross stronghold, and, it could be argued, one of the most important seabird islands in the world

The MPA has been established thanks to international collaboration between governments, NGOs and local islanders.  The whole thing was instigated by the Tristan de Cunha government and the RSPB.

The Tristan islanders themselves led the way however, as nature guardians in the Atlantic Ocean.  They have already declared protected status for over half their territory, and they know that the sea is critical for their long term survival.  They are proud to play a key role in protecting the health of the oceans.

The UK Government Blue Belt Programme, National Geographic Pristine Seas and the Great British Oceans coalition. British Antarctic Survey, University of Plymouth and the Natural History Museum have also been involved.

Recently, a study found that banned fishing in 5% or more of the ocean would increase global catches by 20% plus in future.  And of course this newly protected MPA ties into the wider global goal to secure protection of 30% of the world’s oceans by 2030 to tackle climate change and the biodiversity crisis.

Well done to everyone involved! 

Visit Birdlife International to find out more




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