Dragonera, where there is a call for a much larger marine reserve. | Archive

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Environmentalists GOB want the national environment ministry to enlarge the Dragonera marine reserve, and it is also urging the Balearic government to press Madrid on this.

Regional responsibilities for the sea are limited, so when it comes to the regulation of fishing in waters beyond the limits, the state is responsible. The national ministry has set about declaring a state marine reserve, and this is at the stage of public consultation. GOB has proposed that the new reserve incorporates areas to the north and west of Dragonera.

This proposal would mean the inclusion of an area that currently doesn't have protection but which is important for the Balearic shearwater, itself a protected seabird species. Human activity in the area, says GOB, poses a risk to the bird's habitat.

Where fish stocks are concerned, these are said to be only slowly recovering. In the summer of 2016, prior to the declaration of the Dragonera marine reserve, it was observed that there had been a considerable decline in stocks. The potential for recovery exists because of the characteristics of the marine environment.