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Renck Vitor | Writing-Up Fellow
2021-09-01 - 2022-02-28 | Research area: Sustainability Research
Can Knowledge Integration Help in Biodiversity Conservation? A Case Study in a Brazilian Fishing Community

There are innumerous examples from the literature on how knowledge integration can contribute to biodiversity conservation worldwide (e.g. Huntington 2000; Gilchrist et al. 2005; Gagnon & Berteaux 2009). Not only have we found that to be true in Siribinha, an artisanal fishing community in the Northeast coast of Brazil, but also a potential of improvement of environmental policies. By applying the partial overlaps framework, we discuss some of the Brazilian legislations to protect marine fauna through the eyes of the traditional fishers, particularly regarding closed fishing seasons, which are developed in Brazil by technicians and by researchers, without taking traditional knowledge into account. Through semi-structured interviews with traditional experts, we aimed to analyze their perception on the closed fishing seasons set on their region. We found an exact overlap between traditional and scientific knowledge on the reproductive period of the mangrove crab (Ucides cordatus), but a contradiction on the reproductive period of two snook species (Centropomus undecimalis and Centropomus parallelus). This result shows how knowledge integration not only enables to improve conservation management practices and policy making, but can also play an empowering role to traditional communities and indigenous peoples, contributing to their self-determination