Our main focus is currently our work with the Gulf of Mottama Project (GoMP). With GoMP, our main activities are research training at Mawlamyine University and Bago University, and interdisciplinary research on marine mammals and project impacts (through Most Significant Change evaluation).
The Gulf of Mottama is a special place – it hosts extensive wetlands, which are home to migratory shorebirds (including the Critically Endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper) and waterbirds, important fisheries resources, marine mammals (a recent finding!), small areas of mangrove and tidal forests, agricultural lands, and human communities who depend on the Gulf’s natural resources. It was declared a Ramsar Site in 2017 – the 4th Ramsar Site in Myanmar and the first in Myanmar to not be in a protected area.
The GoMP is a multi-sector project working in Bago Region and Mon State. It is a project of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), implemented by Helvetas, Network Activities Group, International Union for Conservation of Nature, and Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association. A key part of GoMP is research that will inform management decisions – and that is where our work comes in. We work to improve research capacity at two local universities, and we also work to contribute useful research to the project.