MigraMar developed the concept of MigraVía (Spanish for swimway, marine migratory conectivity corridor) in response to the need to implement special regulated areas that allow safeguarding the connectivity and integrity of both open water and reef ecosystems between the different MPAs in the region.
What they are
The MigraVías are a set of connectivity conservation projects that create linkages and marine corridors between protected areas and other patches of habitats such as seamounts and underwater ridges, increasing the mobility and range of many species and allowing them to move across the seascape so that gene flow and diversity are maintained between local populations.
How they help
By linking populations throughout the seascape, there is a lower chance for extinction and a much greater support for species richness, and popula- tions resilience against climate change.
The process to propose a Migravía comprises:
To determine the scientific relevance of working in an area, various analyzes are carried out, such as geological and oceano-graphic characteristics, diversity of marine species and their con- servation status, among others.
Identifying the main actors and analyzing the economic context to explore the management and conservation of the area is of vital importance.
LEGAL FEASIBILITY ANALYSIS
The MigraVia proposal must contemplate adequate marine spatial planning, ordering and use. Sub-areas with total and partial restrictions for fisheries use are analyzed with both spatial and temporal considerations.
The proposed area comprises several points of connectivity between species, many of them in danger of extinction. The area of interest shows current connection networks in various categories and functionality for different species. The area that encompasses the MCM has a significant percentage of the migratory movements of the different organisms studied (sharks, turtles, whales); 7 of the 15 species tagged by satellite telemetry show migrations in the Migravía Coiba-Malpelo region.
The proposed conservation area takes into account data demonstrating the importance of migratory connectivity recorded to date, analyzed in terms of current networks with seamounts documented in the region. The area covered by this region encompasses a significant percentage of the migratory movements of the 389 individuals (15 species) studied.