Brazil names important marine park
The site sustains IUCN-Red List critically endangered species such as Leatherback Sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) and Hawkbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), as well as other endangered and vulnerable species, including Loggerhead Sea turtle (Caretta caretta), Green turtle (Chelonia Myda), Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae), and many threatened fish species such as the Groupers and the coral (Millepora nitida).
As summarized by Sofia Méndez Castillo, Ramsar's Assistant Advisor for the Americas, the area is considered an archeological site due to the number of wrecks found on its waters. It provides livelihood for more than 20,000 fishermen and 80,000 tourism-related posts in the Bahia State area. The threats within the park include illegal fishing, the great number of tourists which causes stress on the bird and coral population and increased litter; and pollution from ship ballast cleaning activities. Research and tourist facilities and activities include a visitors’ center inaugurated in 2004, the Research and Monitoring Center of Abrolhos, a voluntary internship program for undergraduate students, and a consultant council composed of different stakeholders in the community. The site is part of the core zone of the Atlantic Forest (Mata Atlântica) Biosphere Reserve.