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The Pacific coast of Colombia has some of the most extensive mangrove forests in South America. As an isolated region and one of the country's poorest, coastal communities rely on fishing as a main source of animal protein and income. In an attempt to reverse declining trends of fisheries resources, in 2008, an Exclusive Zone of Artisanal Fishing closed to industrial fishing, was established by stakeholders in the Northern Chocó region.

The Pacific coast of Colombia has some of the most extensive mangrove forests in South America. As an isolated region and one of the country's poorest, coastal communities rely on fishing as a main source of animal protein and income. In an attempt to reverse declining trends of fisheries resources, in 2008, an Exclusive Zone of Artisanal Fishing closed to industrial fishing, was established by stakeholders in the Northern Chocó region.

This study has determined a suitable mesh size for small indigenous fish species (SIS) harvesting and has also developed a new gill net operation technique taking into consideration of aquatic biodiversity conservation, the daily intake of micro-nutrients and the livelihood of the rural community. It provides an insight into how employment of specialized fishing gear can help balance SIS fishing as a source of the rural community’s livelihood against biodiversity conservation.

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