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2017-02-24 | project

Analysis of the ecosystem services of mangrove to aquaculture and fisheries in Vietnam

This project will investigate the impact of mangrove forest on shrimps farming and on the risk of shrimp farming, and how changes in mangrove cover affects shrimp harvests. Besides, the project aims to find out how market conditions, community and household characteristics affect the conversion of mangrove into water surface for shrimp farming.

Mangrove forests are known to provide many ecological services and sources of livelihood to local communities. Except for the protected forests, the policy in Vietnam is that mangrove is managed by individual households, who receive a compensation for managing the forests. Households are allowed to limited logging. This policy, however, fails to conserve the forests as farmers tend to convert more mangrove than allowed to other uses, such as water surface for shrimps or crop cultivation.

In this study, which will cover six provinces in south Vietnam, we expect to find out the optimal level of mangrove coverage for shrimp farming systems, considering the benefits of mangrove on fishery. Besides, investigation of the determinants of the behavior of converting mangrove to other uses will provide useful information for policy makers towards a better management and conservation of mangrove forests. The project has the following research objectives:

  • Examine the impacts of mangrove on shrimp farming, specifically the impacts of mangrove coverage on shrimp farming productivity and profitability. Production and profit functions are estimated to investigate the impacts of mangrove;
  • Examine the impacts of mangrove on the risk of shrimp farming. A Just and Pope framework, which allows for modelling the variance of shrimp output as a function of mangrove coverage, is applied for this objective;
  • Estimate the mangrove-fishery linkage. Particularly, we investigate how a change in mangrove area in the community affect the fish harvests. A Schaefer-Gordon fishery model is applied;
  • Investigate the determinants of mangrove conversion. For this objective, we explore how market conditions, community and household characteristics affect the behavior of shrimp farmers in converting mangrove into water surface for larger farming scale.