Mauritius: The Paradise Island with sandy beaches and sunshine all year round! Now, imagine our beaches affected by coastal erosion! Not a pretty view right? Many of us do not realise the true importance of mangroves around our beautiful island. Large areas of mangrove forests are being destroyed for development purposes and to provide passages for boats. It is true that we, mankind, have the knack of destroying what Mother Nature has judged beneficial to us. But, this also includes creating the very own destruction of our marine ecosystems for our selfish means.
At ELI Africa, we have taken the initiative to save our coasts. We believe that preserving our mangrove forests is our duty, so as to provide a safe future for our coastal communities. Mangroves help in protecting our lagoons from sediments by retaining them; furthermore they provide a habitat to crabs, shrimps and juvenile fishes. The roots of these mangroves is a real ecosystem; they support a rich diversity of marine animals. We might not realise it now, but without them, we might not have crabs to eat!
Since 2012, ELI Africa has already planted 16,200 mangroves around the island. And we do not intend to stop here! Our campaign continues and we are planting more! We are doing everything in our capacity to create a more sustainable Mauritius. On Thursday and Monday last, two site visits have been conducted in the northern region of the island. Two sites have already been identified for our next mission: Grand Gaube and Roches Noires.
As it can be seen, shallow and muddy places are needed for mangrove plantations and we can say that these places meet the requirements for the healthy growth of the mangrove propagules. Our aim is to engage more people in our mangrove reforestation programs and raise awareness about the fact that mangroves will contribute to enhancing the beauty of our coasts as well as our marine ecosystems.
At ELI Africa, we think and act differently. Our initiative to secure a better future for our upcoming generation and the coastal communities is already paying off! We look forward to creating more mangroves forests. With the collaboration of the Ministry of Fisheries and the help of our ELI volunteers, we hope to succeed in the mission we took.
So, join us by spreading the word and together, let’s preserve our marine ecosystem!