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Bahamas

Pelican and Fowl Cays

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Conservation and community benefit: Signage and cabanas for two national parks

Date Approved: 01.2012

Ocean

This project protects ocean ecosystems, making coastal communities more economically and physically secure in the face of climate change.

The Abaco Islands, in the northern Bahamas, boast six national parks. Pelican Cays Land and Sea Park (PCLSP), a 2,100-acre land and “no-take” sea park, is very popular. The park contains beautiful undersea caves and patch reefs that are perfect for snorkeling. Fowl Cays National Park is a 1,920-acre reserve that is conveniently reached from most central Abacos cays and settlements. The reefs, and three 25- to 40-foot dive spots in untouched water, are renowned. This park is particularly attractive to scuba divers, and is also an extremely popular area for boating and snorkeling. Fowl Cays National Park also has great spillover value, because its protection enriches surrounding habitat. Both parks are home to fish, rays, sponges, and endangered staghorn and elkhorn coral, along with 12 other coral species.

The Bahamas National Trust is the only nonprofit organization in the world charged with managing a country’s entire national park system. Seacology is funding signage and a small cabana for educational information and use as a rest spot at each park. These will aid in interpretation and protection of the parks and enhance visitors’  experience.

Project Updates

June 2014

The cabana and signage to replace those damaged by Hurricane Sandy were installed and a final report for the project was received in February 2014.

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February 2014

Seacology provided two additional small grants to project partner Bahamas National Trust/Friends of the Environment in 2013 to repair a cabana and replace a sign damaged by Hurricane Sandy. The cabana was completed in September, and the sign will be installed soon.

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June 2013

Hurricane Sandy was felt in Abaco. The infrastructure in the Pelican Cays National Park fared very well, with the cabana and signage remaining intact. Both have been an important part of the increased presence of the Bahamas National Trust which has stepped up their enforcement of the park’s boundaries and worked with fishermen to removed crawfish habitats which used to be in the park. The cabana on Fowl Cay was destroyed, and the sign is missing. Seacology is releasing a small maintenance grant to repair the cabana.

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