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Marine protected areas are part of our solution for healthy oceans. In the British Virgin Islands, after degrading all of Tortola's marine areas, Beef Island is threatened by plans for a mega-yacht marina, golf course and oversized hotel. In response, BVI locals are forming the Virgin Islands Environmental Council.
Roseated Flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber ruber), rare West Indian Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna arborea), and White-cheeked Pintail (Anas bahamensis) will loose mangrove shores. Marine wildlife populations will dwindle if we do not act today to save BVI's most important mangrove ecosystem, creek lagoon, salt pond and coral reef habitats.
BVI legislation recognizes the importance of environment. The problem is holding the government accountable and enforcing the laws.
Researchers have found up to 80% of all commercially important fish species live in Hans Creek Lagoon at Beef Island.
No other BVI marine area has such a high recorded diversity of fish life. This is a hugely important nursery habitat which supplies other parts of the BVI with big fish.
To assist the new Virgin Island Environmental Council, the Ocean River Institute is reaching out across the U.S., Great Britain, Bermuda and the Caribbean for your support in writing the to Premier and urging him to hold developers accountable to environmental regulations and to not despoil marine areas of great natural and social value.
You can help to protect BVI's Beef Island salt pond and lagoon mangrove marine area by putting your name to a letter to the Premier stating what you value about BVI's natural areas and wildlife including roseated flamingos and whistling ducks.