One of the key pieces of the Conference was the inauguration of the MARE- Dragonera Photo Exhibition | Save the Med


The first Sa Dragonera conference, which was held in Puerto Andratx the weekend of 5 - 7 of November, successfully brought together more than a hundred attendees interested in learning about the marine reserve of Sa Dragonera, the project Discover Your Marine Protected Area (MPA) of Sa Dragonera and the Xarxa Dragonera Blava (Blue Dragonera Network).

Mare - Dragonera

Through the stories and presentations by sixteen speakers, the attendees learned about the different aspects that affect and shape the marine reserve. The weekend activities allowed the participant to fully immerse themselves in Sa Dragonera through talks, screenings of short films, group dynamics, a round table, underwater sound experiences, 360º video projections of the underwater world and the exhibition of fabulous photographs from the MARE-Dragonera PhotoCollab.

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The topics included, among others, the development and benefits of the Marine Reserve, the role of the public administration, citizen science in the area, the presentation of ongoing marine custody initiatives and how the community can continue, and even go beyond, their commitment to the care of Sa Dragonera, to marine custody.

Speakers 2nd day

The ecosystem of Sa Dragonera is not only made up of its marine habitats and their fauna and flora, but also of the local community, which has a direct relationship to it. That is why it is essential that we get to know this ecosystem well - to achieve effective conservation and real regeneration” - Yaiza Santana Project Coordinator of “Discover Your MPA ​​Sa Dragonera”

The range of topics brought the different realities experienced by the local community and stakeholders closer to the participants and allowed them to meet administrative representatives, managing bodies and NGO’s as well as local dive centers, artesanal fishermen and businesses that work in the area.

This is why everyone’s participation is very important.”

The productive involvement and collaboration of the attendees helped strengthen the links between different sectors of the community and users of Sa Dragonera, reinforcing the Xarxa Dragonera Network (Blue Dragonera Network).

“The Sa Dragonera Marine Reserve already clearly shows an improvement in terms of biomass, density and abundance of fish. Now that there is a Marine Reserve in the external waters of Sa Dragonera as well, I can assure you that positive results will be seen very soon” - said Antoni M. Grau - Head of the Marine Resource Service, Government of the Balearic Islands.

“It is possible to fish well and obtain good results in a Marine Reserve, by doing it with reduced aggressiveness and fishing intensity.” - Joan Mercant, General Director of Fisheries and Marine Environment, Government of the Balearic Islands. “The sea responds quickly and it responds to all of us.

This is why everyone’s participation is very important.” - Silvia Revenga, Technical Advisor of the Sub-Directorate for Scientific Research and Marine Reserves, General Secretariat for Sustainable Fisheries, Government of Spain.

One of the key pieces of the Conference was the inauguration of the MARE- Dragonera Photo Exhibition by project coordinator Sara García Betorz, an exhibition that will remain open to the public in the plenary hall of the Andratx Town Hall until the end of the month.

Several of the attendees were photographers from the exhibition, including Iván Ruiz, biology student passionate about diving in the marine reserve, and Emili Colom, guard of the Sa Dragonera Natural Park, who shared their experiences from the moment they captured their photographs with the audience.

Due to bad weather, the activities which were scheduled for Sunday the 7th and included a guided route along the coast of Sant Elm to discover marine habitats and learn about local initiatives together with Save the Med, Keida Kayak and MedGardens has been postponed until the end of November.

Save the Med, together with collaborators from Marilles Foundation, MARE and the Andratx City Council, wish to thank everyone for their participation during the conference and their involvement in the care of Sa Dragonera throughout 2021!