Monday, 29 August 2011

St. Maarten Man of War Shoal Marine Park Established

On Friday the 19th of August the Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport & Telecommunication the Honourable Mr. Franklin Meyers signed the Management Contract between Country St. Maarten and the St. Maarten Nature Foundation for the management of the Man of War Shoal Marine Park.

The Marine Park covers an area known as “the Proselyte Reef Complex “, which includes the island’s most ecologically and economically important marine habitat with extensive coral reef areas and sea grass beds.
This area was chosen to be a priority for official conservation because of its intrinsic ecological, economic and cultural value. The Man of War Shoal Marine Park is a home and migratory stop over or breeding site for 3 IUCN Red List Species, 10 CITES Appendix I species and 89 Appendix II species. It is an area with a relatively healthy population of marine mammals including migratory whales and dolphins, numerous species of shark, sea turtles and fish species.

The Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA), an IUCN member, has been a continuous source of support and a resourceful partner of the St. Maarten Nature Foundation and has contributed greatly towards the realization of Nature Conservation in general and Marine Conservation more specifically for the island. In the coming weeks the St. Maarten Nature Foundation will launch a broad based information campaign explaining to the citizens of St. Maarten about their newly established Man of War Shoal Marine Park.

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