Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Looking at Nariva swamp through new spectacles: Reflections of the first site visit of the Nariva Pilot Protected Area Committee

“The hill was steep but all of us made it to the top of Brigand Hill.  The panoramic view on the tower quickly removed any regret over the arduous trek to the top of the tower.  Laid out before us was the beauty of the Nariva Swamp.  Laid out before us were scenes from history. Block A – Leased out for agriculture; Block B – once under rice cultivation and now covered in wetland marsh grasses.  The green of hardwood species and the Bush Bush Wildlife Sanctuary peaking in the distance. The coast line in the distance beckoning memories of the large flood event and destruction of infrastructure in 2014.”

These could be the memories of any of the 13 member team of the Nariva Pilot Protected Area Subcommittee on 4th March, 2015. The establishment of sub-committees comprising of key stakeholders for six pilot protected areas sites is a key strategy for guiding the implementation of the "Improving Forest and Protected Area Management in Trinidad and Tobago" Project. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO/UN) is implementing this four year project on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to ensure sustainable management of the nation's forests and protected areas. 
The Subcommittee commenced work on their work plan with a visit to the pilot protected area site to gather information on land use, hydrology, ecology and threats to improve their contextual understanding of issues related to the management of the site.The Subcommittee intends to use the information from this site visit to make recommendations on the boundaries and level of protection required for this pilot protected area.

Snapshots of the Nariva Pilot Protected Area Sub-Committee's site visit:

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