Maziwe Island is one of the oldest Marine Reserves in Tanzania and can be found about 15 nautical miles off the coast of Pangani. Established in 1981 it was given the status of a Reserve to prevent cutting the trees of the island as well as taking care of the important reef system around.
A lack of protection, the trees still fell for firewood, until just a few were left and those got swept away by the starting sea erosion. Around 1983 the last tree was seen on Maziwe and what is left today, is a sun-kissed sand island, exposed during low tide.
A diversity of nearly 400 species of fish, 35 genera of hard and soft corals, sponges and algae as well as shoreline birds have been identified. Just recently a group of Bird Experts from Denmark counted 35 – 38.000 Terns roosting or passing Maziwe and also spotted the first Black Tern in Tanzania. Still a lot of research needs to be done on Maziwe to understand the importance of the ecological system above and under water.
Please follow the environmental friendly guidelines:
1. Please do not step on corals as they break easily. Watch your feet and fins at all times.
2. Please do not chase, touch and feed marine wildlife. Feeding fish or any other species can lead to them becoming reliant upon the food source.
3. Please do not litter on the island and take all the rubbish back home.
4. Please do not collect any shells or other dead or alive marine life.
5. Please do not anchor on the coral reef.