Newsletter 19 - 2014

Journal 19 - 2014

The track record,15 years later..Founded in 1998, the Saint-Martin Nature Reserve is celebrating its fifteenth anniversary this year. I realize how far it has come and how much work has been accomplished since its creation. Thanks to our local, regional, national, and international partners, and particularly the préfecture of Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Martin, our island has become the key platform, the hub, for dealing with environmental problems. I applaud the upcoming projects which include a scientific research program on the lemon shark and the realization of artificial underwater habitats. This is the first time that the Reserve works with artificial habitats, and they plan to create a welcoming environment for herbivorous reef fish. By increasing their numbers, they hope to have found an ecological solution to the problem of algae development that is becoming detrimental to the coral. Another project supported by several partners entails the implantation of Argos marine transmitters into several humpback whales. This will increase our awareness of the presence of these large mammals in our waters, and help us to get to know them better. There is also the project of the Reserve Headquarters (institut de la biodiversité insulaire de Saint-Martin), which will add tremendous value to our island, and will lead us to broaden our knowledge on global warming, rising sea levels, the future of our natural areas and our wetlands, and the development strategies of our territory. In conclusion, I am proud to have been part of the implementation of our Reserve and I congratulate the team for for what it has become today.

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