Community-managed Marine Area

Published: 30 November 2015
Last edited: 29 March 2019

The policy that regulates the recognition of a Marine Responsible Fishing Areas (MRFA) is under the control of INCOPESCA, the National Fishing and Aquaculture Institute. In 2009, CoopeTárcoles R.L requested the Costa Rican government to recognize a MRFA in their fishing territory, which was approved in 2011.


The recognition of this area and fishers rights helps to conserve both the marine biodiversity and the cultural identity of the local community.


Co-management building
Scale of implementation
Phase of solution

Enabling factors

• A tradition of environmental awareness of the locals • Fishermen recognize the need to conserve natural heritage. •  Policy incidence and dialogue and negotiation between fleets. Collective action and organization.

Lessons learned

1.- Dialogue and agreements for responsible fishing and sustainable use are much more productive and efficient in the long term than excluding fleets.


2.- Organization and collective action is crucial for the sustainable use of resources.


3.- Traditional knowledge is crucial for the management of small scale fisheries.




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