Species Benefiting From Restoration:
• Hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
• Mona’s endemic iguana (Cyclura cornuta stejnegeri)
• White Mangrove (Conocarpus erectus)
• Ipomea sp.
• Suriana maritime
• Sea Grapes (Coccoloba uvifera)
Acres of Habitat To be Restored:
Approximately 2 acres
The main objective of this project is the restoration and
recovery of Hawksbill sea turtle and Mona’s endemic iguana
nesting areas on Carites, Mujeres and Carabinero
beaches of Mona Island.
This project involves the selection and design of 4 plots of
20m x 3m (60 m2) in the coastal zone. In plots 1 and 2, all
adult trees, seedlings, saplings and leaf litter of the introduced exotic
Australian pine (C.
equisetifolia) will be cut or/and removed. From this stage,
Plot 1 will be unmanaged to allow natural succession. Plot 2
will be managed by planting suitable native species for
reforestation, such as attractors of seed-dispersing wildlife
or “roosting trees,” and species with a thin canopy that
produce fine, readily decomposed leaf litter. Plot 3 will be
in an area where C. equisetifolia had been removed
approximately 13 years ago, since this will document later
successive stages. Also it will be helpful to see species
composition before and after C. equisetifolia removal and to
use that information for reforestation. Plot 4 will be a
control with no C. equisetifolia removal. Each plot will be
monitored for iguana and hawksbill sea turtle nesting
activities, soil properties and species richness, among
other parameters, to evaluate methodologies based on
Adaptative Management Theory.
The goals of the project will be achieved
through the execution of three specific objectives:
- Removal of at least 50 percent of the total surface occupied by the
introduced exotic Australian Pine Casuarina equisetifolia
- Reforestation with native species that dominate
- Development of a monitoring program
to evaluate the success/failure of the project as well as
evaluating the first community-based management project for
“Amigos de Amoná” NGO will be participating as volunteers during field activities, cutting and removing C. equisetifolia and
collaborating in the reforestation stage. Also they will contribute in the design of the educational brochures. Trips to see
iguanas, their habitats, and the iguana nursery, as well as night patrols to see nesting sea turtles, will be offered to visitors,
along with educational brochures and oral presentations about their biology and conservation efforts on Mona Island and in the Caribbean region.
Examples of re-sprouting after girdling. Sometimes the girdling does not kill
the tree, which means additional measures have to be taken.