In their latest blog post the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA) explains some of their recent conservation work, monitoring and mapping flora and fauna in Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Maarten:
Protecting this paradise is the goal of the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA), a partnership organization made up of the islands’ protected area managers. DCNA works to ensure the islands preserve their unique natural world through focused management. Effective conservation requires exceptional management, and exceptional management requires objective, reliable data that can be used to measure progress and make critical decisions.
“A Geographic Information System (GIS) is one tool that will contribute to us achieving our mission of safeguarding nature in the Dutch Caribbean,” said Nathaniel Miller, DCNA’s Conservation Projects Assistant.
In addition to working to build a trust fund that will sustain at least one land and one marine park on each Dutch Caribbean island, DCNA is developing a regional approach to conservation and has embarked on multiyear initiatives to standardize management plans, evaluate conservation success, and monitor biodiversity and key habitats.
Through ESRI’s Grant Assistance Program, each protected area management organization on each island and DCNA are benefiting from ArcInfo GIS licenses.
“DCNA is working to help the protected area managers use GIS and ArcInfo software to collect data on environmental threats, key species, vegetation, visitor resources, and other information that will aid in all aspects of management,” said Kalli De Meyer, Executive Director. “Partnering with the ESRI office based in Curacao, DCNA is training protected area staff not only on how to use and understand GIS, but also how to apply these skills to their day-to-day work.” Assessments of protected area management over the last three years have shown gaps between protected area needs and how resources are allocated.
“One of our first GIS goals,” Miller said, “is to enable park management staff to map their protected area threats and resources and then overlay where and how they are expending their resources. This data visualization will give us a fresh perspective on the biodiversity we are protecting and allow us to be more efficient in the work we are doing to ensure its vitality.“
Read more about the DCNA’s work to map nature in the Dutch Caribbean at their blog.
The DCNA was recently mentioned in this post on Green Antilles: Suriname Conservation Foundation and Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance provide good practice examples of conservation trust funding.
[Image: via the DCNA]