St. Maarten Nature Foundation relaunches shark conservation project

Nature Foundation staff tags a shark in St. Maarten's waters. Image: St. Maarten Nature Foundation.
Biodiversity

The St. Maarten Nature Foundation has relaunched its shark research and conservation project, which was put on hold in 2017 as a result of Hurricanes Irma and Maria:

Nature Foundation has restarted its shark conservation programme as part of the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA) “Save Our Sharks” conservation project funded by the Dutch National Postcode Lottery. The research is aimed at better understanding the life characteristics of sharks in St. Maarten waters, including population structure, abundance and migration.

The Foundation had to suspend the research programme due to the impacts of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. With the relaunch, the Foundation aims to continue to conduct scientific research into and monitoring of the shark population, and changing perceptions about sharks through education and outreach programmes.

The Foundation will host its third Annual St. Maarten Shark Week starting June 8 with various activities centred on educating the public about the important role sharks play in the ocean environment.

Information about Shark Week activities is available via Nature Foundation’s Facebook page.

Sharks play a very important role in the oceans, on the reefs and taking care of healthy fish stocks. Sharks are at the top of the food chain in virtually every part of every ocean, also around St Maarten. In that role, they keep populations of other fish healthy and in proper proportion for their ecosystem.

Sharks are also very important to the tourism sector, with many divers traveling to St. Maarten to dive with sharks, said Tadzio Bervoets of Nature Foundation.

Source: the St. Maarten Daily Herald.

 

[Image: St. Maarten Nature Foundation]

 

No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Barbados beach. Image: Ben Geach.
Oceans
Coral reefs worth billions to the Caribbean tourism industry

According to a recent study by the Nature Conservancy, coral reefs contribute over US$7.9 billion annually to the Caribbean economy through tourism. This represents 23% of all tourism expenditures and more than 10% of the region’s GDP. The study, which was supported by JetBlue, the World Travel and Tourism Council, …

Photograph of the Belize Barrier Reef from the International Space Station. Image: Jeff Williams (NASA).
Biodiversity
Working to build climate change resilience for the Belize Barrier Reef

Marine and climate scientists from Columbia University’s Earth Institute and the World Wildlife Fund are working to protect the Belize Barrier Reef, and the entire Meso American Barrier Reef System, from the effects of climate change: Warm-water coral reefs—composed of stony corals, algae, and other organisms—are classified as a “unique …

After Irma on St. Martin. Image: Mark Yokoyama
Biodiversity
Trees heal from hurricanes by growing more efficient leaves

Research carried out in Puerto Rico’s dry forest after Hurricane Maria shows how trees recover after hurricanes by growing leaves that absorb light and carbon dioxide more efficiently: Some tree species heal from the ravages of hurricane damage by growing replacement leaves optimized for greater efficiency, according to a Clemson …