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The world's marine fish populations and diversity are experiencing an unprecedented assault from over-exploitation, pollution, and habitat loss. This situation is a cause of great international concern, as fish resources are an indispensable and major part of both the food supply and the economies of many nations. Established in 1999, the Guy Harvey Research Institute (GHRI) is a collaboration between the renowned marine artist, scientist and explorer, Dr. Guy Harvey, and Nova Southeastern University's Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography. The mission of the GHRI is to provide the scientific information necessary to understand, conserve, and effectively manage the world's marine fishes and their ecosystems. The GHRI is one of only a handful of private organizations dedicated exclusively to the science-based conservation of marine fish populations and biodiversity.
Boundaries of the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape. Red star symbol shows location of the Tropic Star Lodge.
(map source: http://www.mpatlas.org/campaign/eastern-tropical-pacific-seascape/)
The Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape (ETPS) includes the waters and offshore islands belonging to Panama, Colombia, Ecuador and Costa Rica, including the UNESCO World Heritage sites of the Galapagos and Cocos Islands. The ETPS is known for its impressive fish biodiversity and fisheries productivity, but also suffers from high levels of illegal and unregulated fishing. Because of its relative isolation and in some cases national political challenges, the ETPS remains little studied scientifically and is poorly managed for sustainable fisheries.
To increase the scientific knowledge base for improving marine conservation and fisheries management in the ETPS, Nova Southeastern University, the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation, the Guy Harvey Research Institute and owners of the Tropic Star Lodge are collaborating on a long-term research program based out of the Tropic Star Lodge.
The Tropic Star Lodge (TSL) is located in the pristine Darien jungle on the Pacific coast of Panama about 30 miles north of the Colombian border (see map). This lodge is storied in fishing circles given the nearby abundance and diversity of big game fish, including blue, black and striped marlins, sailfish, tunas, mahi-mahi and roosterfish. Many International Game Fish Association world records have been set fishing from the TSL.
The focus of the collaborative research program is the study of the ecology and migration patterns of major gamefishes and sharks in the waters surrounding the TSL.
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