project review

The end of an incredible experience in Madagascar

Review submitted by Madagascar Marine
Review date 29 Apr 2018

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A lot has happened since our first update! We all passed our species tests and started BSPs, the bread and butter at Madagascar Marine! We are now all competent at performing our camp duties, rice and beans have never tasted so good! Although I’m sure everyone is very much looking forward to Christmas dinner. The rainy season has started, and after some minor alterations to the roof of the volunteer hut, everyone can stay dry for the night; thankfully the rain isn’t too frequent but when it rains it pours. There have been more new arrivals on camp since we last wrote, and after a few initial sleep related problems we are getting on like a house in fire. The end of week five saw our mid-phase trip so we all enjoyed hot showers, cold drinks and meat for the weekend, definitely good times. Last weekend however had to be the best yet, a wicked fun dive to Dandrzej’s Bommie and a cultural festival in the village! No-one was hurt though and order was swiftly restored. Overall we are all having a wicked time on camp and making the most of our last days before we sadly have to leave Manta and the amazing friends we’ve made here! It’s been an incredible experience and we’d do it all again in a heartbeat.

Science Update

So, we have come to the end of the phase! Once again, this phase has left nobody disappointed.  As well as completing our quota of BSPs for the phase (bringing our total once again into the 50s), we have also managed to fit in several other aspects of field work over the latter weeks of phase.  The mangrove mapping project has been extended to the Sector 4 stand and the final quarterly survey of the seagrass bed in front of camp was completed.

The highlight of the phase, once again, was a satellite camp to Sakalava Bay, a few miles down the East coast of Madagascar from the mouth of the bay.  Here, despite there being very little reef to survey, all staff and volunteers enjoyed a refreshing break and the thrill of exploring outside of the confines of Diego Bay.

The relaxation was short-lived, however, when on return to camp the volunteers worked hard to produce an impressive array of verbal presentations for their BTEC qualifications.  This really consolidated everything they had learned during their stay on camp and showed how much they have all progressed in their understanding of the issues surrounding marine conservation and the research we are conducting out here.

Alongside MGM project work, staff personal projects are all progressing well with the introduction of a soft coral propagation project and completion of long-term fisheries studies.  Roll on the next phase for a new bunch of keen assistants to help us continue this exciting work!

Find out more about the Madagascar Marine Conservation and Diving project