|Continent||Central and Latin America|
|Date||14 Mar 2011|
The Catch, Picture, Release Fishing Program (CPR Fishing) was created to provide alternative livelihoods for local fishermen, providing opportunities to integrate into the tourism industry using skills and abilities they already possess, while reducing damaging overfishing of the coral reef. The coral reefs of Punta Cana have highly impact by overfishing. In studies conducted by University of Miami, the coral cover and fish populations are among the lowest in the Caribbean. The Catch, Picture, Release (CPR) Fishing program seeks to reduce fishing pressure on the reef while creating alternative economic opportunity for local fishermen that allows the fish populations to recover.
Working with CODOPESCA, the Dominican government authority over fishing, the program will include the formal designation of no-take fishing zones and controlled take areas, the implementation of fishing licenses and limits, on size, species, and seasonality.
Simultaneously, CPR Fishing will engage local fishermen as guides, captains, and boat hands for line and fly-fishing excursions with tourists. The idea of this initiative is to empower the fishermen with entrepreneurial enterprises that simultaneously protect marine resources. In 2009, the Foundation coordinated a fishermen exchange between fly-fishermen from Venezuela and subsistence fishermen from Punta Cana to learn about their experience offering excursions. The Foundation also coordinated a week-long fishing study conducted by professional guides from the United States to evaluate the potential of offering CPR Fishing excursions in Punta Cana as an alternative livelihood for local fishermen.
The Foundation has begun developing a business plan for CPR fishing excursions and will be working closely with local fishermen to develop this project.
For further information contact: