Conserve

CONSERVE

The Conflict Group of Islands is recognised as one of the world’s marine biodiversity
hotspots with over 3,000 species of fish and threatened marine species such as sea turtles.

MISSION STATEMENT

Our goal is effective protection and conservation of the ecosystems and species within the Conflict Island Atoll through sustainable ecological and economic management. This can be achieved through a concerted and passionate effort from all our affiliates and partners.

Atoll CustodianIan Gowrie-Smith

WHAT AND HOW ARE CONSERVING

The Conflict Group of Islands is recognised as one of the world’s marine biodiversity hotspots and is currently targeted under the Community Based Coastal and Marine Conservation Programme as a Marine Protected Area (MPAs).

Conservation International conducted a Rapid Biodiversity Assessment in 1997 which documented the biodiversity of the Conflict Island Atoll. It revealed extensive areas of coral coverage and significant species diversity being an average of 220 species of fish per site, higher than the Great Barrier Reef and it also identified other species completely new to science.

The conservation responsibility now lies with the owner, the visitors and the local community to uphold all practices that safeguard this pristine and unique area of the world.

TIMELINE OF THE CONFLICT ISLANDS

The Conflict Group of Islands is recognised as one of the world’s marine biodiversity hotspots and is currently targeted under the Community Based Coastal and Marine Conservation Programme as a Marine Protected Area (MPAs). Conservation International conducted a Rapid Biodiversity Assessment in 1997 which documented the biodiversity of the Conflict Island Atoll. See how the Conflict Islands came to be what it is now.

1879

1879
Conflict Islands Gets Title

The Conflicts Islands were first charted in 1879 by Captain Bruce of H.M.S. Cormorant, but they weren’t named until 1880 after H.M.S. Conflict by Lieutenant Bower. The ship first sighted the islands in moonlight, and the ship passed east to west along the southern end of the Conflict Islands.

2003

January 13, 2003
Ian Gowrie-Smith Buys Conflict Islands

Australian-born, London-based entrepreneur Ian Gowrie-Smith bought the islands in 2003, after first visiting them in 1996.

2007

April 25th, 2007
Development of Panasesa Resort

Mr Gowrie-Smith develops a resort on the third-largest island, Panasesa, which has a 650-metre runway – which he said could accom­modate most private jets, after a leisurely four-hour flight from Sydney. The largest island, Irai, has 7000 metres of beachfront land and capacity for a 3000-metre jet runway.

2015

August, 2015
Conservation and Restoration

Conflict Island Management has implemented security measures to protect the area from illegal poaching of turtles and bêche-de-mer (sea cucumbers). Over-harvesting over the recent 10 years has led to declining populations and could eventually lead to imbalance and adverse effects on the ecosystems if not rectified.

MARINE LIFE

With a third of the world’s species of marine fish, the Conflict Islands are home to everything from the tiny ghost pipe fish to the huge manta rays and killer whales. The 21 uninhabited tropical islands surround a spectacular lagoon

With a third of the world’s species of marine fish, the Conflict Islands are home to everything from the tiny ghost pipe fish to the huge manta rays and killer whales. The 21 uninhabited tropical islands surround a spectacular lagoon

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TURTLE
SPOTTING

The islets within the Conflict Group are favourable nesting and breeding sites for Green, Loggerhead and Hawksbill Turtles. The natural lagoons and sandy beaches make it ideal for the turtles to nest, rest and feed. Green turtles are the most common species found around the Conflict Islands and although they are listed as an endangered species they are still killed for their meat and eggs and conservation efforts are underway.

softcoral

SOFT CORAL
GARDENS

The Conflict Island Attol boasts spectacular soft coral gardens which are full of colour and sculpture and can be fully appreciated by snorkelers and divers who visit them. The Alcyonacea, or soft corals do not produce calcium carbonate skeletons like other corals, but instead contain minute, spiny skeletal elements called sclerites – which give the coral support and a spiky, grainy texture that deters predators. A must see!

fishspot

NEW
SPECIES

It is undisputed that there are many fish species currently unidentified who inhabit the waters in and around Milne Bay Province. The area is located in the Coral Triangle, which supports the most diverse marine ecosystems on Earth. In just 10 years, 33 new fish species have been discovered in this area including the damselfish Chrysiptera cymatilis
to buy them

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TURTLE
HATCHING

This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them. This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted himThis was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them. This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them

Marine-Research

MARINE RESEARCH
STATION

The owners are looking to collaborate with a conservation group to build a marine research station on one of the Islands of the Conflict Group. Locals within the community will be invited to be part of an ongoing dive study to assess marine stocks and record new species identified within the Atoll.

thretendspecias

THREATENED
SPECIES

This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them. This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted himThis was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them. This was a watershed moment for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them

OUR CONSERVATION PARTNERS

PARTNER 1

Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them

PARTNER 2

or the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them

PARTNER 3

nt for the atoll where Ian Gowrie-Smith visited and saw a reckless treatment of the islands and prompted him to buy them

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