Protected Area Management
3C is working with the Hepu Dugong and Seagrass Nature Reserve in Guangxi, China, to improve science-based management of the nature reserve. The nature reserve used to be a site where dugongs and extensive seagrass beds could be found. It is estimated that the last dugong was sighted there over three decades ago. The nature reserve has an extensive education center (in Chinese) containing detailed information about the area’s ecosystems and natural resources. 3C is helping the nature reserve assess the current ecological status and devise ways to restore the ecosystems, particularly mangroves and seagrass beds. Ideas for supplementary livelihoods for local communities are also being developed. This should discourage people from engaging in activities that are harmful to the environment, such as digging for clams that destroy the seagrass rhizomes or unsustainable aquaculture in the Core Zone of the Protected Area.