The Global Biodiversity Initiative Project (GOBI) hosted a meeting in Oman on October 2-4th, 2023 with the theme of ‘New tools to support ocean conservation, planning and sustainable use in the northwest Indian Ocean’. A number of ASWN members participated, representing organizations from Oman, Pakistan, and India.
The workshop highlighted a suite of new tools developed under the GOBI-IKI Project, including:
- Migratory Connectivity in the Ocean website: mico.eco
- Important Marine Mammal Areas: www.marinemammalhabitat.org/imma-eatlas . A number of IMMAs were designated in the Arabian Sea by ASWN members who participated in a workshop in March 2019.
- Seabird Tracking Database: www.seabirdtracking.org
The meeting also included presentations from regional participants, who described ongoing projects to protect marine biodiversity in Oman, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, the Seychelles, and Mauritius. These presentations included a focus on Arabian Sea humpback whales, and the work that the Environment Society of Oman, WCS India, WWF Pakistan and the University of Karachi, and the ASWN are doing to better understand the population and to work towards a regional Conservation Management Plan for this Endangered population.
The meeting provided an excellent opportunity for a few ASWN members to reconnect in person, and to welcome new members from WCS India and WWF Pakistan. It also provided inspiration to and raise funds to bring the wider network together in person. Watch this space!