Are Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) effective? Yes, but not as well as we thought, a new study finds.
Globally, illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing is known as one of the biggest threats to the health and future of the oceans. MPAs attempt to protect enough critical marine habitat to ensure survival of ocean life despite this. Unfortunately, illegal fishers intentionally target reserves because they know that fish are more abundant within those areas, Pew Charitable Trusts reported. Now, this study shows how detrimental illegal fishing is even to nearby protected areas, because of an “edge effect.”