The Thailand eShark Project run by Shark Guardian and Project Aware Ocean Action Project winner, has been an incredible success that continues to grow with more data and enthusiastic supporters every day!
The project was created to get the local dive community in Thailand involved with a citizen science project. In this case we use divers dive logs to record when they DO and DON'T see sharks while diving. This data is used to help assess shark sightings to indicate any patterns of increasing or decreasing sightings of sharks by divers. This data will then be used to assess and put in place steps towards shark conservation inititives within Thailand. Thailand eShark Project
The chart above shows the recent number of data entries for the Thailand eShark Project from November 2013 till the end of February 2014.
As part of our Ocean Action Project Goals, Shark Guardians Liz and Brendon have been on the road on a massive tour of the west coast of Thailand promoting the Thailand eShark project and encouraging more divers to participate. It started with a presentation in Khao Lak (close to the Similan Islands where most of our data is coming from) in February where Liz and Brendon gave a talk together with Fabrice, a scientist from the Marine Mega Fauna Foundataion. This included an udpate about the eShark project and educating people about sharks and their importance to our oceans and reasons for protecting them. The presentation was also open to the general public. Read full blog here
Then it was onto Koh Lanta in the south of Thailand towards the end of February and beginning of March 2014. Here we visited many of the dive centers to give them more information about the Thailand eShark project, as well as posters and instructions on how to enter the data from their dives. Whilst on the island of Koh Lanta we gave several presentations to the local dive community about sharks in general and how to get involved with Shark conservation through diving and eco tourism. Read full blog here
Phuket is one of the largest dive communities in Thailand. It was therefore vital for us to visit the island and to provide additional information about the Thailand eShark Project and a progress report of our findings over the past few months. We had a really good turn out in Phuket and we look forward to go back there in a followup session later in the season. Read full blog here
Whats next? Shark Guardian will continue to promote, give presentations and conduct workshops for the Thailand eShark Project over the next few months. We already have a trip scheduled to Ao Nang in Krabi and also visit the dive communities in the gulf of Thailand including the islands of Koh Tao, Koh Samui and Koh Phangnan.