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1 . Madagascar     Madagascar
Madagascar is one of the world’s largest islands. Along with the Indian sub-continent it was separated off from the rest of Africa during the Jurassic, and was then separated from the Indian subcontinent (and the granitic Seychelles) during the late Jurassic/early Cretaceous. There are clear differences between the physical conditions and resulting ecological communities on the east and west coasts. The east coast is steep and, in places, mountainous. This is matched by a steeply shelving bathymetry and narrow continental shelf. The central and southern sections of this coast are dominated by vast sandy beaches and barrier islands and there is no offshore reef development. Further north the coastline becomes more complex, with a number of embayments and rocky headlands as well as offshore islands. There are a number of emergent fossil reefs along the more northerly sections of this coastline. Active coral growth is also widespread in the north, often growing on fossil structures offshore, although not always contributing to active reef accretion. There is a submerged and fragmented barrier reef described off Toamasina, although the recent status of this is unclear. Discontinuous fringing reefs also occur off the coast around Foulpointe and Mananara, Nosy Boraha (Sainte Marie Island), and the Masoala Peninsula.

For its size, Madagascar is relatively sparsely populated. The majority of the coastal population is concentrated on the eastern coast, while the western coast is less developed, aside from the larger cities of Tulear and Mahajanga. It is this west coast, however, that also supports the majority of fishing and tourism-based activities. Artisanal fishing is a critical activity, accounting for an estimated 55 percent of all fishery production from an estimated 1 250 fishing villages operating over 20 000 small vessels (pirogues, mostly without engines). Reef-associated species are heavily relied upon, accounting for 43 percent of total production. It remains a largely traditional fishery, although there are increasing numbers of migrant fishers who do not observe existing customs and taboos. Largerscale commercial and export fisheries make up the remainder of the fishery and, together with aquaculture, provide critical foreign exchange earnings. Tourism is another important and relatively rapidly developing activity, with at least 50 percent of arrivals visiting the coast.
Source: Spalding, M.D., C. Ravilious and E.P. Green , 2001 , World Atlas of Coral Reefs . Prepared at the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre. University of California Press,Berkeley,USA.421p. (See Document)

2 . Madagascar     Madagascar
Madagascar spans 14° of latitude, harbouring over 3500 km of coral reefs in widely differing oceanographic settings. The most extensive reefs are found in the north-east, north-west, and south-west coasts, and have the highest richness of coral species in the central and western Indian Ocean. Almost all accessible reefs are exploited by traditional artisanal fisheries with fishing effort increasing considerably over the past decade due to rapidly expanding commercial demand from fisheries enterprises. The growth of fishing effort has coincided with diversification of the range of species targeted by fishers and collectors. In addition to the negative impacts of unsustainable and largely unmonitored biomass removal, reef degradation is attributable to the chronic impacts of hyper-sedimentation from river discharge as well as organic enrichment and pollution of coastal waters. Cyclonic activity in Madagascar is high, with severe localised damage to coral reefs attributable to cyclones and tropical storms on an approximately annual basis.
Source: Ahamada, S., J. Bijoux, B. Cauvin, A. Hagan, A. Harris, M. Koonjul, S. Meunier and J.P. Quod , 2008 , Status of Coral Reefs in the South-West Indian Ocean Island States: Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion, Seychelles . In: Wilkinson, C. (ed.). Status of Coral Reefs of the World: 2008. Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network and Reef and Rainforest Research Center, Townsville, Australia. p105-118 (See Document)

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