Submissions sought on proposed Protected Areas

The water levels rise and fall seasonally at Colliers pond. - Photo: Paul Watler

Birders in East End have long set their sights on a brackish pond, tucked away at Grand Cayman’s eastern end beside the Queen’s Highway, that hosts a variety of local and migratory birds.

Colliers Bay Pond, as a former Animal Sanctuary protected under the Animals Law (1976), automatically became a Protected Area under the National Conservation Law.

It is one of three such sites in the Cayman Islands, all of which are ponds surrounded by buffer vegetation that is important to resident and migratory waterbirds.

The Department of Environment’s Terrestrial Resources Unit is charged with establishing and managing terrestrial protected areas.

According to the Department, the limits of the protected area are generally defined by a line measured 300 feet inland from the high water mark of the pond.

Under Section 9 of the National Conservation Law, landowners of adjoining properties and the general public are invited to submit written views on additional sites which have been nominated to become Protected Areas.

The list is on the Department’s website and the nominations will be reviewed by the National Conservation Council.

In Grand Cayman, the nominated sites are Barkers, Vidal/Barkers Cay, the western Crown mangrove cays, the Salt Creek mangroves, the Central Mangrove Wetland and the Lower Valley forest.

According to the website, the period for consultation will end on May 2, after which the Council will take into account all written submissions before deciding whether to recommend the proposal to Cabinet, or to amend or withdraw it.

This is the first of two sets of nominations the Council expects to submit to public consultation this year, and submissions will be published as part of the consultation report.

“Submissions should be made using the online survey, or on a form which is available to download and print,” the site states.

“This will assist the Council in objectively assessing the level of public support or opposition for each proposal, as well as providing for comments in your own words.”

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1 COMMENT

  1. I think that the government and DOE and NCC needs to all stop a realize that all inhabitants of the Islands have a right to exist , but people can live this way in one community , but other things like wild life has live a different way in their own habitat . You just can’t build on a sanctuary an expect the wildlife to stick around .

    I completely agree that there should be sanctuaries and protected areas around the Islands . But I don’t like how the boundaries are being set , 300 ft from the high water mark inland of the pond .
    I think that the boundaries should be set 300 ft outward from the high water mark of the pond all around the pond . One instance of what I am referring to , look at the pond in Barkers and say that the pond is a 1,000 ft from the beach, that land owner would be able to develop up to the pond if his boundaries went to the pond . The tricky word here is “inland” .

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