- Cayman Kai Property Owner Association (CKPOA), Cayman Government, DOE, DOT and National Trust
- Cayman Islands
We need to preserve the Bioluminescent Bay here in Grand Cayman and protect the dinoflagellates from dredging, pollution, and destruction of the remaining mangroves and overuse of the bays water.
With the existing homes around the bay, fossil fuel engines used inside the bay and the destruction of the mangroves that once surrounded the bay, we have already done enough damage to this environment.
The Cayman Kai Property Owner Association (CKPOA) in Cayman is looking for approval to dredge our fragile bioluminescence bay in the near future. They want to remove sand from the cove as well as from the entrance to the cove to make it easier for fossil fuel boats to come through the bay. Not only are we worried as a company that thrives on this organism to deliver a fascinating tour to our guests, but we are deeply concerned that dredging the bay is going to harm this amazing natural phenomenon.
“Many dinoflagellates are primary producers of food in the aquatic food webs. Dinoflagellates are an integral part of the first link in the aquatic food chain: the initial transfer of light energy to chemical energy (photosynthesis). Almost all other organisms are dependent upon this energy transfer for their subsequent existence. This group of microorganisms comprises a large number of unusual algal species of many shapes and sizes. Some even serve as symbionts, known as zooxanthellae, providing organic carbon to their hosts: reef-building corals, sponges, clams, jellyfish, anemones and squid.”
Smithsonian Institution. National Museum of Natural History. http://www.mnh.si.edu/highlight/sem/dinoflagellates.html
“There used to be more bioluminescent bays. New Providence Island in the Bahamas had a bioluminescent bay. Its opening to the sea was widened and the dinoflagellates population declined. A bioluminescent bay in Hawaii suffered a similar fate. Others in the Caribbean have been lost due to industrial or boat pollution, the cutting of mangroves for charcoal, the overgrazing by cattle of nearby fields, which produces water-clouding runoff, and the increase in artificial lights, which reduces the phenomenonís brightness, according to Barabara Bernache Baker, a retired biologist who has worked hard to preserve the Mosquito Bay.”
"La Paguera used to be the most spectacular bay," says Eduardo Cintron, a marine biologist with Puerto Rican department of natural resources.
Jan 1993 Wild Places by Tom Verde
“Tests now show that because of pollution, La Paguera bay only glows 1/10 of its original strength.”
Paul Zaul July 1960, National geographic
“The Puerto Mosquito in Puerto Rico is now a preserved bay and listed as a national natural landmark. The DNER has classified the Puerto Mosquito as a “Class SA” water body, which means it that it is of high quality or of exceptional ecological or recreational value, and cannot be altered except by natural causes. There is a DNER regulation to help preserve the bay by prohibiting swimming in the water and all tours are done on electrically powered pontoon boats or paddle boats. The National Trust of Puerto Rico has also implemented a conservation certification program for Mosquito Bay guides and tour operators in coordination with DNER, as well as workshops on reducing water pollution for enforcement, elected officials, hospitality and tourism leaders, and the members of the construction industry.”
Grand Cayman needs to classify our bay as a high quality or of exceptional ecological or recreational value, that cannot be altered except by natural causes. We need to implement the same laws that DNER in Puerto Rico has put in place in order to preserve our bay. We should also enforce programs to teach our hospitality and tourism leaders, locals, and guests on how to protect our environment instead of harming it.
Dredging, pollution, destruction of mangrove trees, land development, and overuse of the bay’s water can kill the fragile dinoflagellates. Our first step to saving the bay is to NOT dredge it. We then must also try to enforce electrical boat usage inside the bay, reduce ambient light and replant red mangroves.
We can’t let these natural lights go out!
Let's preserve this unique phenomenon before its too late.
Once the beginning of the food chain is gone, you CANT get it back.
Say "NO" to dredging the Bioluminescent Bay.
Say "YES" to preserving and implementing regulations for the Bay.