Karaburun Peninsula Mediterranean Monk Seal Monitoring and Protection Project Completed
Karaburun Peninsula Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus) Monitoring and Protection Project, contracted by Ministry of Environment and Forestry İzmir Provincial Environment and Forestry Directorate, completed under expertise of SAD-AFAG.
Issues are categorized in the aspects of human activities threatening coastal and marine areas, fishery, environmental pollution, tourism, coastal construction, human entrances to Mediterranean Monk Seal caves in Karaburun Peninsula which is one of the least degenerated coastal areas in Aegean Region and these problems are studied in detail.
SAD-AFAG took place in the project with 8 people and acquired data provided by up-to-date and distinctive field studies and intelligence studies by this team. Observed changes in Karaburun are compared with the data acquired in 1991. It’s identified and documented in the conducted studies that approximately five Mediterranean Monk Seal currently using area and this number can increase to seven.
The leading factor threatening area is defined as unplanned and dense urbanization (cooperatives) destructing characteristic coastal structure within Mordoğan and Karaburun municipality boundaries. Outlawed summer house constructions within first degree protected area in Hamzabükü, outlawed individual construction (summer houses) examples in the west side of the peninsula and dense and adjacent urbanization which is causing breakages in pristine coasts, destructing cultivated areas and violating geographical natural beauty are determined. Additionally excessive and illegal fishery examples are determined throughout the peninsula and it can also be summarized as one of the main problems threatening the area. Examples such as fishing with fish spear at night, fishing with diving tube and fishing spear, illegal troll and coastal dragging, amateur fishermen using professional techniques are also seen within the area.
The coastal zones of the peninsula is protecting under “protected area” statue. However summer house cooperatives beginning from the end point of first degree protected areas designating possible irreversible change for the area. For the purpose of olive cultivation, dense agricultural activities converting peninsula’s characteristic flora, ecology and cultural values are also appointed.
Karaburun Peninsula’s pristine coasts and habitats (caves) sheltering Mediterranean Monk Seal keep have essential importance for the nourishment, sheltering and breeding of this specie. The need of the integrated marine and coastal areas management model is evaluated for the purpose of determining utilization-protection balance of this longest natural coastal area of the Aegean Region within this project.