Coco Collection recognized for valuable contributions to manta ray and turtle research
Maldives.net.mv – Coco Collection is renowned for its stylish yet sustainable hospitality and its involvement in environmental initiatives such as the Manta Trust and Maldives Turtle Identification Program has only strengthened this position.
Manta Trust envisions to create a sustainable future for the oceans where Manta Rays thrive in healthy and diverse eco systems. Coco Collection is actively involved in the Maldivian Manta Ray project which was initiated by the Manta Trust in 2006. This contribution and support has been officially recognized by Manta Trust by ranking Coco Collection as the top submitter of newly identified Manta Ray sightings and the second top submitter of overall Manta Ray sightings for the year 2013. Last year, Chiara Fumagalli, Resident Marine Biologist at Coco Bodu Hithi and Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu, has contributed the details of 24 new Mantas and 93 Manta sightings to the project’s database. This information is a tremendous help towards attaining the research objective of Manta Trust: to estimate the size and structure of the Maldivian Manta Ray Population.
Apart from the involvement with these gentle ocean giants, Coco Collection also leads in support and contribution towards the Maldives Turtle Identification Program. Founded in 2011 by Marine Savers and Seamarc, this government-endorsed initiative aims to conserve turtles by protecting their nests, rehabilitating injured turtles and tracking turtles through photo identification. Coco Collection has been ranked as the second top submitter of turtle sightings for this programme for the year of 2013, with an impressive 159 sightings reported by Chiara over the last 12 months, with the help of guests and associates. Additionally, guests and associates in Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu also care for turtle nests by protecting them from poachers and release the baby turtles into the ocean after they hatch.
“I am delighted that our efforts to contribute to these projects have been recognized by Manta Trust and the Maldives Turtle Identifications Programme. Guests and associates at Coco Bodu Hithi and Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu are very committed towards conserving these beautiful creatures and are always keen to support such causes. Getting a chance to snorkel with a charismatic Hawksbill Turtle or dive with a graceful Reef Manta Ray is an unforgettable experience for guests at Coco Collection’s resorts and we will carry on supporting these projects which have become very dear to our hearts”, comments Chiara Fumagalli, Resident Marine Biologist at Coco Collection who has been leading these projects at both resorts.
Coco Collection’s environmentally conscious efforts have also been recognized for its sustainable hospitality by EarthCheck, the leading environmental certification agency in the travel and tourism industry. While Coco Bodu Hithi has been certified EarthCheck Bronze, the lush and green Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu is EarthCheck Silver certified. Coco Collection will continue to support initiatives such as the Manta Ray and Sea Turtle identification project and welcomes new projects aiming to conserve other endangered species as well.