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Co-management as an option for the Narrows

A workshop to facilitate the Development of an effective co-management model for The Narrows / Newcastle Bay, St. Kitts and Nevis was held at the St. Paul’s Anglican Church Hall Charlestown, Nevis from January 11 – 13, 2018.  The Organization of American States (OAS) Sustainable Cities, Resilience and Risk Management Project in collaboration with The St. Kitts and Nevis Department of Marine Resources (DMR) with Ms. Janice D. Hodge as the Consultant.

 

Welcome remarks were given by Richard M. Huber, Ph.D., Chief, Sustainable Communities, Hazard Risk, and Climate Change Section, Department of Sustainable Development, Organization of American States. An overview of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Resources Act of 2016 (FAMRA) regarding MMAs and provisions for co-management “shared management responsibility”  was presented by Maritza Queeley, Port State Control Officer, DMR. Tricia Greaux, Marine Management Area and Habitat Monitoring Officer and Ahisha Herbert Marine Conservation Officer presented an overview of Marine Managed Areas (MMAs), highlighting the St. Kitts and Nevis Marine Management Area with description of zones and boundaries.  Principles of Ecosystem Based Management (EBM) with emphasis on the human dimension in natural resource management and Ecosystem Based Adaptation to Climate Change and Ecosystem Based Fisheries was done by Tasia Jones, Marine Conservation Officer.

 

The second day of the workshop will include an assessment of Stakeholders’ Perceptions regarding co-management of The Narrows / Newcastle Bay facilitated by Janice Hodge. As well as the session to develop a draft co-management model to include responsibilities for all stakeholders.

 

A Field Visit to Newcastle Bay and a Marine Tour of the Narrows to observe the socioeconomic interactions between fishers and community members as fishers return from sea with their catch which they sell to their customers as well as to observe the marine biodiversity that exists within that area.

 

Declaration of St. Kitts Nevis Marine Management Area

Declaration of the St. Kitts & Nevis Marine Management Area (MMA)

On August 18th 2016, the Honorable Eugene Hamilton approved on behalf of the Government of the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis the declaration of the St. Kitts and Nevis Marine Management Area as defined by the two (2) miles radius of sea water around the St. Kitts and Nevis’ coastline including the Monkey Shoals area to be managed by the Department of Marine Resources as the entity with jurisdiction of the Federal Waters of St. Kitts and Nevis as indicated in the Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Resources Act (FAMRA) 2016.

This St. Kitts and Nevis Marine Management Area has been proposed since the late 1980’s. Substantial work was completed in the 2010 Marine Zoning Plan for St. Kitts and Nevis after extensive multi-sectoral consultations to define the marine area to be managed and the zones within the area. However, the Fisheries Legislation at the time was inadequate to adequately manage the St. Kitts and Nevis Marine Management Area.

Since then several consultations and efforts have been geared towards increasing the awareness and importance of this proposed area. With the newly passed FAMRA 2016, there is now legislation that supports for proper management and governance of such an area.

The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis is thankful to the fisherfolk, government officials, Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine, the Eastern Caribbean Marine Management Areas Network and other stakeholders for their invaluable assistance during the process of establishing the SKNMMA.

 

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History and Heritage Hike to the Narrows

On Saturday February 27th, 2016, The Deparment of Marine Resources partnered with the organisers of History and Heritage Month in St. Kitts and Nevis to guide a hike to Cockleshell Bay.

About 30 persons took part in the hike that was lead by Mr Kharim Saddler (Fisheries Assistant) with responsiblity for FAD’s and Seamoss Product Development.  Mr Saddler sensitized the participants about the benefits of the mangroves, biodiversity, the sand erosion on the South Friars Bay and the importance of protecting The Narrows (The Channel between St. Kitts and Nevis).

The hike began on Frigate Bay Lawn at about 6.30am and continued 6 miles to Cockleshell Bay.