About Sea Sensors.

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Why we believe it
is important.
The world’s oceans are still largely unknown and humans use and exploit them using increasingly sophisticated methods. In Tanzania, in additional to traditional fishing gear, throughout the coast explosives are used to kill fish. This can have devastating impacts on coastal ecosystems and coastal communities. Monitoring illegal blast fishing activity that often occurs far from shore is challenging, and acoustic monitoring has shown the greatest potential for providing reliable quantitative data on the incidence of the activity, especially from remote parts of Tanzania. This information is vital for monitoring and targeted enforcement. Using underwater microphones, the team records blasts from dynamite fishing off Tanzania’s coast and uses the data to inform the public and officials through online maps and data-driven stories.
The project is headed by marine scientist, Gill Braulik and was granted funding through Code for Africa’s innovateAFRICA programme in 2017.
Gill Braulik
Scuba dive

24.09.2017

Deployment of Blast Recorders

Boat

The acoustic monitoring focuses on the two areas of Tanzania that are well known to have high levels of blasting activity over many years: Dar es Salaam, and Tanga. Equipment was constructed using local materials where possible. A triangular metal frame was welded by local craftsmen in Zanzibar, heavy weights to hold the acoustic equipment to the sea bed were used gerry cans that previously held cooking oil, that were filled with concrete.

The metal frame was wrapped in used bicycle inner tubes to prevent abrasion to the sensitive equipment (add photos). Finally the gear was transported via truck, high speed ferry, and boat to the deployment location

Meet the Team.

Dr Gill Braulik

Project Lead

Gill is a marine biologist and research fellow at the University of St. Andrews in the UK. She lives and works on marine issues in Tanzania. She is currently leading the SeaSensors project.

Jamie Macaulay

Acoustic Analyst

Jamie is a specialist on underwater acoustics of whales and dolphins and is responsible for developing the open source software and algorithms to detect bomb blasts.

Jason Rubens

Project Advisor

Jason is an independent marine environment and fisheries specialist and has been involved in supporting, monitoring, surveillance, and control of blast fishing in Tanzania.

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How to get involved

If you’re interested in the project or the data, please contact us. You can also help us document blasts. If you hear or see a dynamite blast in Tanzania, please record the date, time and location, and send the information to us.ecord the date, time and location, by clicking on this link.

Footer Map

Sea Sensorsis an acoustic data project that collects underwater blast data to help provide
quantitative spatial information on the incidence of the problem over time, that will enable targeted enforcement.

The project is funded throughCode for Africa’sinnovateAFRICAprogramme.

Code for Africa(CfAfrica) is Africa's largest data journalism and civic technology initiative, operatingCitizenLabs
across the continent to help fast-track digital innovation to drive social change.

innovateAFRICAis the continent’s largest fund for supporting civic media experimentation and digital news
startups in everything from data-driven journalism and investigative reporting, to newsroom management,
audience engagement, digital convergence, and media business models.

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