Using Local Ecological Knowledge and Environmental Education in Resource Management of Abalone in Carot, Anda, Pangasinan

Emmanuel C. Capinpin


The objectives of the present study were to (1) determine the local ecological knowledge (LEK) of abalone gatherers through interviews and mentoring, and assess the correspondence between scientific information and LEK, so that areas where local knowledge may be most useful in resource management could be identified, and (2) to empower selected gatherers/farmers with knowledge and technical skills through environmental education to help develop or build their capacity to become sustainable resource managers. The LEK of abalone fishers was determined using three complementary approaches – group interview, individual interview, and mentoring sessions. Local fishers possess a wealth of knowledge about the interactions of species gained through many years of observations, and this knowledge may be useful in guiding biologists in ecological restoration or management regimes. Additionally, the fishers’ LEK, validated by modern scientific ecological findings, could be a source of important and effective ideas in resource management. The knowledge of the abalone gatherers about important abalone fishing grounds should help in pinpointing critical areas that need to be managed. Abalone mariculture in cages should be set up in these areas to routinely create dense breeding populations which can help in enhancing recovery and in providing fishers with a source of additional income. The continued enforcement of marine protected areas and the periodic release or reseeding of abalone in sanctuaries could also be considered viable resource management options. Other recommendations for resource management based on gathered local knowledge and lessons learned from the environmental education (EE) seminars are also presented.

Keywords: Abalone, local ecological knowledge, environmental education, resource management

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