Meesters, E.H.W.G.

Marine debris in mangroves and on the seabed: Largely-neglected litter problems

While the scarcity of up-to-date data on beach litter contamination in the Caribbean has been stressed in several recent studies, we here point to the even greater paucity of published work on litter in mangroves and on the shallow tropical seafloor. During collection of baseline data on beach litter contamination on the Southeastern Caribbean island of Bonaire we also collected preliminary data that may serve to highlight the need for further studies on these largely neglected litter issues.

...

Marine litter contamination is a wide-spread problem and considered to be one of the most serious threats to sustainable use of the region’s marine and coastal resources. Mangrove litter and shallow submerged litter contamination figure significantly in Bonaire and we have made practical recommendations to help address these problems in a separate report to government. In presenting this synopsis here, we aim to draw scientific attention to these largely neglected facets of the litter problem and hope to see further studies to assess the extent of these problems in the Wider Caribbean.

Date
2013
Data type
Scientific article
Theme
Research and monitoring
Geographic location
Bonaire

Baseline surveys of Lac Bay benthic and fish communities, Bonaire

Findings:

The main conclusion of this study is that the shallow, warm and saline back-water habitat which is continuing to increase in importance within Lac Bay is unable to support meaningful mangroves, seagrass or algal meadows, nor the key nursery species. As the natural process of land reclamation by mangroves carries on, the bay’s important nursery habitats will come under additional salinity stress and likely continue to decrease in coverage and quality at an accelerated rate.

Distribution of sea grass and algal beds in Lac Bay

  • The valuable seagrass and mangrove habitats of Lac are currently trapped in an enclosed bay.
  • High light-intensity and well-circulated shallow habitats that fringed the mangroves of the central bay have the richest assemblages with the highest biotic coverage.
  • Isolated mangrove pools have the lowest total cover, species richness and biodiversity of all habitats.
  • Biotic diversity and cover decrease towards the deeper parts of the bay.
  • There is an alarmingly rapid invasion of the bay by the invasive seagrass H. stipulacea.

Fish species utilization of contrasting habitats in Lac Bay

  • Fish community variables differ consistently among habitats and are influenced by the percent cover of seagrass vegetation or presence of mangrove-root structure.
  • Mangrove fringe habitats are a premier habitat since multiple life stages of a variety of species showed highest densities there. Mangrove fringing open waters had highest overall fish densities and species diversity.
  • The various vegetated sub-habitats all play a unique role for different size-classes of different fish species. 

Management Recommendations:

  • Management action is needed to stem further erosion of nursery habitat quality and ensure that a tipping-point is not reached beyond which recovery may be difficult or impossible.
  • Measures should be taken to help restore water depth and circulation to relieve the bay’s ecosystem of thermal and salinity stress caused by the shallow backwaters. This includes excavating accumulated erosional and biogenic sediments as well as dredging to restore former feeder channels by removal of mangrove overgrowth (as already started by Stinapa).
  • Further studies to assess the impacts of the invasive seagrass H. stipulacea on the bay’s flora and fauna.
Date
2012
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Report number
C129/12
Geographic location
Bonaire

Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) op weg naar werelderfgoed

Het Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) staat sinds 2011 op de Nederlandse Voorlopige lijst van het Werelderfgoed. Dit betekent dat een nominatie kan worden ingediend om als natuurlijk werelderfgoed erkend te worden. In dit rapport wordt beschreven welke stappen nodig zijn om tot een nominatie voor de status van werelderfgoed te komen.

De ‘Outstanding Universal Value’ (datgene wat het gebied wereldwijd uniek maakt) moet worden aangetoond. Hierbij zijn drie aspecten van belang:

  1. Het gebied moet voldoen aan minimaal één van de vier door UNESCO gestelde criteria voor natuurlijke werelderfgoederen;
  2. Het gebied moet voldoen aan condities voor integriteit;
  3. Het beheer van het gebied moet voldoende zijn om de kwaliteit van het ecosysteem van het BNMP veilig te stellen voor de komende generaties.

Verder moet het gebied en haar OUV worden vergeleken met vergelijkbare werelderfgoed gebieden en met vergelijkbare gebieden elders in de wereld door middel van een Comparative Analysis.

De hele procedure is in dit rapport samengevat in een schematisch stappenplan. Omdat er zware eisen gesteld worden aan de nominatie zijn in dit stappenplan ook beslismomenten aangegeven waarop aan bepaalde voorwaarden voldaan moet zijn om verder te gaan met de aanvraag (zogenaamde ‘go/no-go’ momenten).

Aangezien de hele procedure de nodige financiële middelen vraagt, moet min of meer zeker zijn dat de nominatie haalbaar lijkt voordat aan de verschillende onderdelen van de nominatie begonnen wordt. 

Date
2012
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Report number
C140/12
Geographic location
Bonaire

Management plan for the natural resources of the EEZ of the Dutch Caribbean

On the 10th of October 2010 the governmental entity known as the Netherlands Antilles is scheduled to cease to exist. Each island will aquire a new status within the kingdom. Following the declaration of an Exclusive Fishery Zone (EFZ) in 1993, an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) has been declared in the Dutch Caribbean on the tenth of June 2010.

The EEZ area concerned, is a large expanse of sea which harbours exceptional biodiversity, and represents an important natural renewable resource potential. The Netherlands Antilles, Aruba and The Netherlands have, therefore, opted to draft a management plan for the EEZ. This initiative began in the year 2005 when the first conference regarding the management of the biodiversity in the EEZ was held. The consensus was that despite a fragmented Dutch Caribbean, the EEZ should always be integrally managed. In 2009 the participants of the second conference confirmed the need for common management and developed common goals, principles and a framework for the management of the Dutch Caribbean waters. Resulting from this conference a management plan was drafted, circulated to all stakeholders and discussed on the 1st of June 2010. Based on the input and feedback received, as well as subsequent correspondence, this final management plan was jointly developed.

The Dutch Ministery of Agriculture, Nature, and Food Quality (LNV) gave financial support to facilitate the process. This management plan initially stems from the framework policy plan “Natuurbeleid van de Nederlandse Antillen” (2000) that recognized the urgent need for a management plan for the Saba Bank, situated inside the EFZ waters, to ensure sustainable fisheries and protection of its rich biodiversity. It also closely follows the intention of the Kingdom with regards to the goals set forth in the Dutch biodiversity policy programme “Beleidsprogramma Biodiversiteit 2008-2011”. In this respect, as a party to the Convention on Biodiversity, The Netherlands also has a strong international commitment to help stem the global decline in biodiversity.

This management plan outlines the purposes and manner in which the Caribbean Exclusive Economic Zone and Saba Bank in particular may be used in a sustainable manner, based on a shared vision and common set of goals. It outlines the management objectives, as well as key policies, and strategies with which to achieve sustainable management. It also addresses the administrative structure, resource use, financial support, key information needs, and action points most urgently required to set sustainable management in place.

To set the stage for implementation and properly initiate this process governments of The Netherlands Antilles, Aruba and The Netherlands have, among others resolved to:

  1. take those steps needed to legally designate the Saba bank as a specially protected national marine area,
  2. take all steps necessary to legally designate the Dutch Caribbean EEZ as a Marine Mammal Sanctuary,
  3. install a EEZ Marine Resourses Committee to guide the process of further management implementation and
  4. allocate the required core funding.

These important intentions are formalized and set in action by means of an agreement between parties. 

Date
2010
Data type
Research report
Theme
Legislation
Research and monitoring
Report number
C100/10
Geographic location
Aruba
Bonaire
Curacao
Saba
St. Eustatius
St. Maarten

Saba Bank; health status 2010. Cruise report

Findings:

The main conclusion from this study is that the health of the reefs of the Saba Bank has deteriorated since the first observations in 1972, 1996, and 2002. The general impression is that the Bank is still recovering from the 2005 bleaching disaster, but there is not enough data to exclude other reasons (e.g. overfishing, anchor damage, hurricanes).

  • In 1996, Meesters et al. estimated coral cover at 7 locations to lie between 60 and 90%. These percentages were nowhere observed this time. The best site visited had an estimated coral cover of around 50%.
  • There is now a high cover of algae (mainly Dictyota spp. and Lobophora spp.) on the reefs of the Bank.
  • The present absence of important grazers such as the black sea urchin are likely to slow down recovery.
  • Fish numbers appeared to be lower than previously observed, though sharks were observed on almost every dive, indicating a still intact food chain. The low numbers of fish may be a seasonal effect, a result of the presence of predators, or a result of changes that followed from the 2005 bleaching event.

However, corals appear healthy and the reefs of the Saba Bank are probably slowly recovering to their previous grandeur.

  • Very few coral colonies with diseases were observed.
  • Some colonies were bleached as result of the seasonal high water temperatures, but there appeared to be almost no mortality among these bleached colonies. 

Management Recommendations:

Begin to regularly monitor the health of the Bank’s coral reefs and the impact of human activities such as fishing as soon as possible (permanent video transects are planned to be installed in 2011 at a number of sites on the Bank).

Date
2010
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Document
Geographic location
Saba bank

Eutrophication status of Lac, Bonaire, Dutch Caribbean Including proposals for measures

Abstract:

Lac is a semi-enclosed lagoon located on the south-eastern side of Bonaire, and contains a diversity of shallow water coral reef associated habitats in close proximity such as mangroves, seagrass beds, Halimeda algal beds, the back reef and sand flats. These habitats support a diversity of fish and invertebrates. The bay has numerous international and national legal protections. The Bonaire National Marine Park regulations and various Island Decrees facilitate from the local perspective. However, despite all regulations, the bay faces several changes, and management and protection of the bay is hampered by a lack of scientific information regarding current environmental status.  

Nutrient poor waters are a requirement for healthy coral reefs. When these become enriched with nutrients, it results e.g. in increased algae and affected reef condition. One area of interest for management is the eutrophication status of Lac. Eutrophication is a pressure that might explain some of observed changes in the bay. However, no baseline on the eutrophication status of Lac exists. IMARES and Environics NV conducted a snapshot assessment of the eutrophication status for current understanding and as a basis for future management. Environics conducted the field measurements at Lac, and most of the data analysis. IMARES analysed geographical data and together with Environics cowrited the report.

The purpose of this baseline study was to assess the trophic status of Lac by analyzing 4 potential indicators of eutrophication simultaneously:

  • Nutrient levels
  • Levels of fecal indicator bacteria (enterococci)
  • Epiphyte loads of seagrasses,
  • Benthic community composition of the back reef

The monitoring was performed at 32 sites within the bay and 1 control site outside the bay in December 2010.

In this study, three of the four observed indicators point towards an ecosystem that is under stress from eutrophication. The levels of nutrients in the bay exceeded thresholds for open coral reef systems due to lack of better. Overall, concentrations show that enrichment with nitrogen was widespread and levels commonly exceeded threshold values. No clear source or “hotspot” could therefore be identified in this study. Phosphate only exceeded threshold values at a few locations, but no clear source was identified. The diffuse enrichment of nutrients across the bay probably results from multiple factors such as water circulation, residence time, freshwater input, rainfall, groundwater contamination, tidal range, and geology. Besides the (semi-) natural conditions the nutrient status is likely to be affected by human impacts as greywater inputs and lacking of proper sewerage. All these factors should be considered regarding the future state and measures to tackle the eutrophication of the bay.  

Enterecocci bacteria were detected at levels above acceptable levels as determined by ISO for bathing waters. The mean levels of enterococci decreased as the distance from shore increases with the highest levels found at groundwater sites and zero enterococci found on the back reef sites. Based on this dispersion we assume that sources of enterococci in this study are most likely birds and cattle (donkey and goat manure). The identification of the true sources of enterococci in Bonaire is however compelling and further study on this aspect is necessary to protect public health.  

The levels of epiphytes on seagrass blades, showed differences in biomass among studied stations. This could mean that seagrass beds in different regions of the bay are experiencing different levels of water column nutrients but no clear relation between nutrient levels and epiphyte cover was observed in this study.

The benthic composition monitoring revealed high abundance of calcareous algae (Ramicrusta sp.). This abundance is likely to be a bloom (pers. observations over time). The bloom of Ramicrusta sp. might be indicative of nutrient enrichment and uptake occurring in Lac. The alga is currently taking over habitat where hard corals lived and changes the benthic composition of the back reef and potentially affecting the integrity of the reef crest. The degradation of the reef crest will diminish the protective role provided by the structure and increase exposure to wave and storm action from the adjacent sea.  

Management Recommendations:

Despite the current eutrophic state of Lac, studies elsewhere indicate that eutrophic bays may begin to recover within months after implementation of proper measures. To do so, natural sources of nutrients should be distinguished from anthropogenic sources. Based on the results of this study and historical accounts of other bays in the Caribbean that have been degraded by eutrophication; the following recommendations for Lac are suggested:

  • a. Reduction of nutrient and fecal bacteria inputs by removing donkeys and goats from the watershed, and ensuring adequate toilet facilities and sewerage at Cai and Sorobon, including greywater disposal.
  • b. Continuation of nutrient monitoring nutrient in order to locate clear sources and fate of the eutrophic state of Lac. We recommend adding urea to the suite of nutrients monitored in this study.
  • c. Implementation of a regular monitoring program to identify sources and fates of fecal bacteria in order to support public health. Effectiveness of above measures can then be assessed as well.
  • d. In general, to understand the outcomes of the water quality management plan it would be of great value to have an understanding of groundwater flows, circulation patterns and residence time of water in Lac.
Date
2011
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Report number
C093/11
Geographic location
Bonaire

Quick scan environmental impact assessment of the St. Eustatius harbour extension

At St. Eustatius a project has started for the improvement and expansion of the Seaport St. Eustatius. The planned activities related to the project need to be evaluated in order to comply with the legal requirements for a licence from the competent authority Rijkswaterstaat Noordzee in the Netherlands.

A quick scan of the potential environmental impact for the planned activities regarding the St. Eustatius harbour extension was commissioned by Rijkswaterstaat Noordzee. This quick scan was performed within limited time and based upon limited background information. No additional research on site was performed. Consequently, this report provides an environmental impact assessment based only on a review of literature and expert judgement.

Within the project it is foreseen that an estimated 10.000 m3 of sediment will be dredged from the turning basin and dock in the new harbour and from the old harbour. The dredged material will be disposed of in the sheltered inner harbour and south of the breakwater. This deepening of the St. Eustatius harbour and associated activities can potentially negatively impact the environment (directly) through:

  1. Destruction of habitat on the dredged site and on the site where the dredge material is deposited
  2. The amount of sediment that will be dispersed into St. Eustatius coastal waters, and the cascading impact thereof on marine habitats
  3. Noise in marine habitats caused by the placement of piles and moorings

The resulting deepened harbour, the disposal sites and changes in future use may cause long term (indirect) negative impact on the environment due to:

  1. Dispersal of the dredge spill deposits, and thereby threatening marine habitats
  2. Increased turbidity due to harbour sediment erosion, increased sediment trapping and more shipping movements
  3. Changing current and wave patterns, thereby threatening key monuments of human history close to the shoreline
  4. The increased risk of spills (fuel, oil, bilge water), introduction of nutrients and marine litter, and introduction of invasive species (bio pollution)

These potential impacts have been investigated in this report and have resulted in the following findings:

The tidal and residual currents around St. Eustatius are weak and estimated to be up to 20 cm/s. Near the harbour area, the residual flow is probably dominantly north. The wave height is low throughout the larger part of the year, except during hurricanes and tropical storms. From December to April cold fronts in Florida regularly generate swells from the north to northeast (“brown seas”). These events occur once or twice a month, last for a day to a week, and may generate swell waves 3 to 5 m high.

The marine substrate in the harbour area consists of a hard substratum overlying a more loosely packed conglomerate including sand and pebbles. This hard substratum consists of large rock fragments and cemented conglomerates. Removing this hard layer makes the underlying softer material available for erosion, especially since the deepened area will be exposed to the winter swells and has a water depth where the swells may break (and hence lead to high near-bed shear stresses). The risk for increased levels of suspended sediment due to erosion is probably small, but depends on the fine silt content of the sediment to be exposed. The available information does not indicate the presence of such fine material in the sediment.

During the dredging works, the sediment spill is expected to be limited. It is assumed dredging will be done during calm conditions. Some sediment will enter the water column during dredging, but due to the low ambient currents most will immediately settle from suspension. If present, silt and flocculated mud will be transported 1-2 km northward. Unflocculated mud can be expected to mix with ambient currents within days, leading to only limited increase in turbidity.

Storage of dredged material occurs in the sheltered inner harbour and south of the breakwater. Little dispersion of this sediment is expected during the dredging and storage activities partly due to the planned placement of bubble screens.

Over longer timescales, the removal of the hard layer will probably lead to higher turbidity in the harbour during storms. The winter storms are associated with southward currents, and therefore some of this sediment may be transported south of the wind breaker.

It is expected that deepening of the harbour will lead to a minor change in alongshore transport in the inner harbour, but will not affect alongshore transport north of the old harbour or south of the breakwater. The wave height near the ruins just south of the old harbour will probably increase due to deepening which may have a small effect on the coast.

Based on the above findings and expert judgement regarding sediment transport and turbidity changes the following conclusions are drawn on the potential impact on the environment:

The sediment that enters the water during dredging works is expected to settle relatively quickly, leading to limited sediment-plumes and turbidity. Therefore, no mayor or irreversible impact from dredging works is to be expected on the surrounding habitats. This is based on the assumption that fine silt is not present at the site. However, if these sediments are present, habitats up to 1-2 km north of the harbour can be affected. The impact is estimated, however, to be limited due to the low expected volumes.

Dredging works will impact living organisms at the dredged site and deposit- sites, covering a total area of approximately 1-2 ha (dredged and dredge-deposit site). Recovery is likely to occur over time if environmental conditions permit. This may take up to several years in case of removal of climax stage ecosystems such as coral reefs and seagrass habitats. 

Direct impact on marine mammals due to pile driving and placement of moorings are considered to be negligible as the migrating season has already passed and noise levels are considered to be relatively low.

During the deposition of the dredged sediment at the two locations, no impact on surrounding habitats is expected due to the minor dispersion and mitigation measures taken (bubble sheets).

Unless added measures are taken it is expected that the dredge deposit on the south side of the breakwater and south of the old harbour will erode and will be dispersed during storm conditions. The rate at which this deposit will erode, and how much that contributes to overall turbidity during the storm-event, cannot be predicted based on available information.

An adverse impact of the deposited sediment over longer timescales on surrounding habitats cannot be excluded. Erosion of the southern deposit during storm events or hurricanes is likely to occur. This means that it cannot be ruled out that an extra total volume of 7000m3 sediment can be transported towards the southern reserve during a single hurricane event, potentially smothering coral and seagrass habitats. This might lead to severe impact on some species of corals and sea grasses. A significant part of the southern reserve is covered with these species. Current species coverage and abundance is not known, and therefore impact cannot be quantified.

Besides the intrinsic ecological value of the habitats of the southern reserve, the southern reserve holds many important dive sites. The environmental quality of the southern reserve habitats is therefore of high importance to the sustainable economic development and prospects of St. Eustatius. Any risk of deterioration of the southern reserve through resuspension of the dredged material and deposition within the southern reserve should be considered with caution and necessary preventive actions should be taken.

Potential indirect impacts on historical monuments could occur as a result of slightly increased wave heights in the harbour but are expected to be minor.

Indirect impact due to more extensive use of the harbour is expected to be a risk, but hard to quantify. Maintenance dredging is not expected, and if needed, the impact due to sediment suspension will no doubt be less than that of the dredging related to this extension, thus limited (assuming calm conditions and no silt content). Risk of bio-pollution is likely. In order to assess actual impact and proper measures, monitoring should be considered. 

Preventive actions should focus on the deposited sediment in the southern corner of the breakwater and lack of information on silt and mud content. Suggestions are to:

  • Retrieve information on silt, mud and chalk content in the dredging area
  • Make sure sediment deposits cannot erode towards southern reserve. Proper constructions
  • should be considered with the contractor and island bureau
  • Halt dredging and deposit activities temporarily in case of elevated seawater temperatures
  • and during rough seas (to avoid multiple stress)
  • Monitor surrounding habitat quality (reefs and seagrass) over time
  • Monitor future use and related pressures and mitigate as considered needed 
Date
2011
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Report number
C085/11
Geographic location
St. Eustatius

Coral growth rates revisited after 31 years: What is causing lower extension rates in Acropora palmata?

Linear extension of branches in the same Acropora palmata (Lamarck, 1816) population in Curaçao was measured, employing exactly the same methods, in 1971–1973 and in 2002–2004, and the resulting coral growth rates are compared. Linear growth shows the same pattern over seasons in both periods with growth being significantly higher in summer than in winter. Growth in the 2002–2004 time interval was significantly slower than in 1971–1973. Mean monthly growth ranged from 0.69 cm (winter) to 0.81 cm (summer) in 1971–1973 and from 0.62 cm (winter) to 0.75 cm (summer) in 2002–2004. This means that linear growth rates in 2002–2004 were 7.2% lower in summer and 10.7% lower in winter compared with 1971–1973. Considering possible causative environmental factors relating to these decreases in growth rate, we cannot preclude the possibility that a change in ocean pH could be responsible for the drop in extension rate.

Date
2009
Data type
Scientific article
Theme
Research and monitoring

Coral reef crisis in deep and shallow reefs: 30 years of constancy and change in reefs of Curacao and Bonaire

Coral reefs are thought to be in worldwide decline but available data are practically limited to reefs shallower than 25 m. Zooxanthellate coral communities in deep reefs (30–40 m) are relatively unstudied. Our question is: what is happening in deep reefs in terms of coral cover and coral mortality? We compare changes in species composition, coral mortality, and coral cover at Caribbean (Curacao and Bonaire) deep (30–40 m) and shallow reefs (10–20 m) using long-term (1973–2002) data from permanent photo quadrats. About 20 zoo- xanthellate coral species are common in the deep-reef communities, dominated by Agaricia sp., with coral cover up to 60%. In contrast with shallow reefs, there is no decrease in coral cover or number of coral colonies in deep reefs over the last 30 years. In deep reefs, non- agaricid species are decreasing but agaricid domination will be interrupted by natural catastrophic mortality such as deep coral bleaching and storms. Temperature is a vastly fluctuating variable in the deep-reef environ- ment with extremely low temperatures possibly related to deep-reef bleaching. 

Date
2005
Data type
Scientific article
Theme
Research and monitoring
Journal
Geographic location
Bonaire
Curacao

Biodiversity of the Saba Bank supports status of Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA)

Abstract:

This report contains a study regarding the biodiversity of the Saba Bank, one of the three largest atolls in the world. All scientific and anecdotic evidence suggests that the area is a hot spot of biodiversity and one of the few areas in the Caribbean that is still in a relatively pristine condition. The atoll is likely also important as a source of larvae for other areas in the region because of its enormous dimensions and diverse habitats. Major damage however may already be inflicted by the anchoring of large oil tankers. More scientific research is necessary with regards to the damage inflicted by anchoring and to the sustainability of current fishing practices, but to date there is already sufficient data to call for strong protection of the Saba Bank as soon as possible.
Therefore, an application to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to designate the Saba Bank as a Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA) in order to prevent possibly irreversible damage to the ecosystem and to enable sustainable protection of it’s vulnerable resources seems crucial and urgent.

This research is performed within ‘Beleidsondersteunend Onderzoek’ (BO-11), cluster NLP of LNV-programs.

Findings:

The main conclusion from this study is that the Saba Bank is a hot spot of biodiversity and one of the few
areas in the Caribbean that is still in a relatively pristine condition. The Bank is likely also important as a source of
larvae for other areas in the region because of its enormous dimensions and diverse habitats.

  • Scientific evidence that the Saba Bank constitutes a major hot spot in marine biodiversity in the Caribbean region has strongly increased over the last couple of years and is now overwhelming.
  • All studies to date express surprise and wonder at the number of different habitats and species within the Saba Bank.
  • With limited sampling effort new species have already been found within the Bank and more are to be expected.
  • The Bank is likely be one of the very few places in the Caribbean that as yet has largely escaped human related pressures and may still be considered as being in a relatively pristine condition.

There is to date already sufficient data to call for strong protection of the Saba Bank as soon as possible. Designating the Saba Bank as a
Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA) in order to prevent possibly irreversible damage to the ecosystem and to
enable sustainable protection of its vulnerable resources seems crucial and urgent.

Management Recommendations:

  • Study the effects of fishing to ensure that it remains at a sustainable level.
  • Draft and implement a management plan as soon as possible. At present anchoring outside the 12 miles zone is not regulated and anchor damage could be devastating to the whole ecosystem.
  • Carry out more research about the ecological processes of the Saba Bank so as to protect it in the most effective way.
Date
2010
Data type
Research report
Theme
Research and monitoring
Report number
C014/10
Geographic location
Saba bank