© 2012 Margaret Sands

Out in the Reserve

On Thursday we accompanied the Fisheries Department and a representative from Wildlife Conservation Society on a survey of the southern cayes in the South Water Caye Marine Reserve.  WCS is very involved in the support and management of the Glover’s MPA and they are now moving into SWCMR as well.  Currently, they are in the initial stages of their work which pretty much involves documenting the current state of the reserve.  This particular trip was intended to document structures on a group of cayes so that the age of any future construction will be known and permits can be checked.  When we stopped at a caye, we made a GPS point then documented how many structures we saw, what the ecosystem looked like (we learned that mangroves are native vegetation while the highly prevalent coconut tree is invasive), and if there were inhabitants we recorded how many and how many bathrooms.  The data itself was less than thrilling, but it was interesting to get a tour of the other cayes and see the wide variety of infrastructure (or lack thereof) among the various islands. Here’s what we saw:


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