Important Bird Areas of the Caribbean - Curaçao
Curaçao’s five IBAs—the island’s international priority sites for bird conservation—cover 16,280 ha (including marine areas) and c.24% of the land area. At 13,555 ha the Northeast Curaçao parks and coast IBA (AN015) makes up c.83% of this IBA coverage. The North-east Curaçao parks and coast IBA embraces Curaçao’s two terrestrial national parks (totalling c.2,300 ha). The remainder of the IBA is a Protected Conservation Area, a designation common to part of the Malpais-Sint Michiel IBA (AN016) and the Jan Thiel Lagoon IBA (AN018) although in none of these areas is there active management for conservation. Muizenberg IBA (AN017) is designated as protected parkland, but also suffers from a lack of active management. Klein Curaçao IBA (AN019) is not protected in any way. The IBAs have been identified on the basis of five key bird species (see Table 1) that variously trigger the IBA criteria. Each of these birds occurs in two or more IBAs although the majority of the Near Threatened Caribbean Coot Fulica caribaea occur in the threatened and unmanaged
Muizenberg IBA (AN017).
All of the IBAs have urgent management requirements if the populations of the birds for which they are internationally important are to thrive. However, securing disturbance free
zones around the tern nesting colonies appears to be one of the greatest needs. If implemented effectively, the tern populations would increase dramatically (as seen at the
protected colonies on Aruba) and perhaps some of the 1,200 pairs of “Cayenne” Tern S. sandvicensis eurygnatha that used to breed (pre-1962) at Jan Thiel Lagoon IBA might return.
Monitoring the populations of the terns and waterbirds should be used for the assessment of state, pressure and response variables at each of Curaçao’s IBAs in order to
provide an objective status assessment as well as to highlight management interventions that might be required to maintain these internationally important biodiversity sites.
Retrieved from Birdlife International