Translator Disclaimer
1 May 2013 The Last Call for Marine Wilderness?
Nicholas A. J. Graham, Tim R. Mcclanahan
Author Affiliations +
Abstract

Wilderness areas have been widely discussed in the terrestrial conservation literature, whereas the concept of marine wilderness has received scant attention. The recent move to protect very large areas of the ocean and thus preserve some of the final marine wilderness areas is a bold policy initiative. However, some important questions have remained unanswered, such as whether marine wilderness areas support a different composition and abundance of species than do the smaller marine no-take areas (NTAs) that are steadily dotting our coastlines. We present a case study from the world's largest wilderness coral reef NTA, the Chagos Archipelago, and demonstrate that fish biomass is six times greater than and composition substantially different from even the oldest NTAs in eight other Indian Ocean countries' waters. Clearly, marine wilderness does promote a unique ecological community, which smaller NTAs fail to attain, and formal legislation is therefore crucial to protect these last marine wilderness areas.

©2013 by American Institute of Biological Sciences. All rights reserved. Request permission to photocopy or reproduce article content at the University of California Press's Rights and Permissions Web site at www.ucpressjournals.com/ reprintinfo.asp.
Nicholas A. J. Graham and Tim R. Mcclanahan "The Last Call for Marine Wilderness?," BioScience 63(5), 397-402, (1 May 2013). https://doi.org/10.1525/bio.2013.63.5.13
Published: 1 May 2013
JOURNAL ARTICLE
6 PAGES

This article is only available to subscribers.
It is not available for individual sale.
+ SAVE TO MY LIBRARY

SHARE
ARTICLE IMPACT
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS
Get copyright permission
Back to Top