Saturday, May 18, 2024

Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve

Construction of pier in Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve raises concerns among stakeholders on Ambergris Caye

The construction of a pier within the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve in northern Ambergris Caye has raised concerns among concerned residents who maintain that no such structures should be allowed in this sensitive marine area. The responsibility to manage these marine protected areas mainly falls on the Belize Fisheries Department (BFD), which plays a role in approving structures in sensitive marine areas. They know the situation and visited the site at Robles Point over a week ago with the local authorities to issue a Stop Order. Despite the order to halt any further construction, it has reportedly continued. As a result, the Fisheries Department is now looking at other alternatives to address the problem.

Agreement signed at Bacalar Chico national park to improve the country’s marine reserve network

The Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve in northern Ambergris Caye is considered by many island residents an area exploited by encroachers endangering the unique and protected wildlife in that area. Many concerned residents continue to report illegal fishing, clearing of land, and hunting. The area is also a critical nesting area for sea turtles, and respective authorities are urged to do something before it is too late. The Ministry of the Blue Economy and Civil Aviation (MBECA) is aware of the situation, and to continue the efforts to address the issue, the ministry participated in the signing of a subsidiary agreement between the Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT) and the Belize Fisheries Department to improve the management of the marine reserve network in the country.

Two Mexicans and one Belizean arraigned for illegal fishing at Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve

On Tuesday, December 10th Adriel Ken, a Belizean waiter, Ronaldo Arriola and a 14-year-old minor of Xcalak, Mexico, were arraigned at the San Pedro Magistrate Court after they were detained by agents of the Fisheries Department for illegal fishing at the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve.

Margaritaville Resort on schedule to open on Ambergris Caye in 2020

Plans for the completion of a resort complex under the Margaritaville brand in northern Ambergris Caye are on schedule, and according to its shareholders, the multi-million dollar project will be open for business in December 2020. As works continue to meet this deadline, an entourage of executives representing Margaritaville descended on the property on Tuesday, October 29th for a routine inspection.

No cure for new coral disease infecting the Belize Barrier Reef System

The health of the Belize Barrier Reef System is becoming more than a priority for the environmentalist community as Belize’s reef is under attack by a disease called ‘Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease.’ The damaging coral disease primarily affects the stony coral species and has killed out large areas of coral in other regions such as Florida USA.

Coral tissue loss disease threatens Belize’s Barrier Reef

Stony coral tissue loss disease was first detected in the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve in Belize in June 2019, adding to other threats such as rising sea levels, warming seas, ocean acidification, and climate change, which are already endangering the long term survival of the Meso-American Reef System. Belize's Barrier Reef is a major attraction for the tourism industry and also serves as an important habitat for Belizean fisheries.

One case of Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease case confirmed on Ambergris Caye; tour operators and guides are asked to be on the lookout

After a recent report of a case of Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD), Hol Chan Marine Reserve (HCMR) is kindly asking all tour operators and guides to report any sightings of unhealthy coral.

Margaritaville brand property to open in Ambergris Caye raises concerns

The announcement of a mega multi-million dollar resort complex under the Margaritaville brand, scheduled to open in 2020 in northern Ambergris Caye, has raised concerns among islanders, including environmental and governmental institutions, due to its location within Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve - a UNESCO World Heritage Site.