The Daly News. Friday. Ocoter 24,1997 21
Seaman's voice of conservation ignored by government
. r.ut.wek's tribute to the late posaued.
old.d I S.C hied Seahs
on and expeioun South and
Central America. od the Pacific W
I mentioned his return to St. food habit
Coix in 1949 with the into elio to l well do
sty for a short period of time. OnI
Seaman was working then with 1950, So
the Wrigley Chewing Oum Co. in migratlo
South America when the Virgin averaoi
Islands government enticed him to Ma
accept a poestiio as wildlitfe super Island
visor for the Deparmunent of'Fi as to Som
and Wildlife. North A
On May 16, 1949. at o 45, world.
Geoge A. Seaman started h new In the
career with the Virgin lands e Virgin
eminent. birdie pat
Seaman remained with Fish and Cro-
Wildlife until 1969, when hbe retired Seama
from the department when the
For 20 years, Seaman was the the thouta
only government official who poke This
out for the wildlife of 'the Virgin islands'
Thi great naiv natural, who proes
was bhom n "Freedom City" Fred- Seaman
erikated, wu the John the Baptist day movie
voice in the wilderness. arrive a I
He studied, documented. 60.000bh
researched and made recommenda- In tiho
tons to the government about the Lagoon o
valuable resources these islands birds ted.
a -rote hundreds of
Wildlife of the Virgin
xh rporu as the hiory
le quall-doven, and the
tt of thee animaia were
an Hill. St. S Thomas in
&aman counted 8.763
X Zenaida Doves at an
six hou s aday.
blneds migrated to the Vir-
- eacd year before head-
ath America and back to
terica and other parts of
19WSO and before the 60s.
Sliands were a haven for
ocularly the cays and St.
n lived in the islands
birds population was in
as mainly because of the
disturbed habitats, epe-
April 15 to May 15,1950.
stated that. "2,000 doves a
ed across the islands we
the considerable figure of
1950a and 0se. the Kraus
a St. Croix thousands of
nested, and ao on at this
beauty wetland, which. was
destroyed when Hes O and Har-
voy Z ium Corp. were buit ina
The Krause Lagoon was the
largest wlands are In of the Virgin
The destruction of Krause
Lagoon really saddened Seman's
He had spent many years there
observing, recording, and doca-
menn theo behvlior of birds and
This wetland drew hundred of
hunters from the United State and
other parts of the world during the
hunting season In the Virgin
The Krause Lagoon on the south
shore of St. Croix was like the
Florida verglade with soan abun-
Old-timers can tell you the
Krause Lagoon, south shore areas
and part of Frederiksted areas the
sky were dark with birds as they
flew over the island to neat in the
tal n and waplada.
In 1958. Seaman published the
first check Hls" of birds of the Vir-
This document proved valuable
In birdlife chdage
1950 uatil now, Swman lo wrote
m .aun sepots on the mongoose
Including de life history and threats
to ative animal life.
He wrote extensive reports of
the White-tailed dooeer entitled,
"Short History of Deer of St.
Crois" ad numerous report on
other widle of the VIrgn bslnd.
In -1966, Seaman published a spe
cal report titled "Conservalo
Mater Plan for US Virgin Iland."
This was em of the first several
land-use plans written for the gov.
cmmanct that was never adopted. In
1997, we still have not a land use
plan. Seaman continues to cry in the
wldernes for the protection of
mland. sea and wildlife.
He stated that "we must lay
aside stable aeas now for the pro-
tectio of land. sea and wildlife ...
our countryside can be urbanized
out of all beauty and recreational
value in an satoundingly short time.
One look around and it is alarming.
ly evident that the scenic beauty ot
all the islands is at stake."
Has this government listened
Look at St. Thomas today, thli
island has bece urbanized out of it.
I thank God every day that per:
of St. John became the Nations
Park of the Virgin islands.
Sad to say, the birth place or
Seaman's home, St. Croix, is up if.
grabh by 8gedy developers.
In Seaman's honor, it would hb
wonderful to ae Anally Bay. Will.
Bay, Sweet Bottom Bay. Ham Bluai
and the whole northwest ridgf
mountain watershed areas i,
become the first Wildemrness Nation
at Park of the Virgin Islands.
To me, this will be the greater
honor to protect the northwest of St
Croix In the honor of a great Cru
Seaman always said. "he ncvce
got to first base" with the Virgin
Islands goveromeat when it came to
Olasee Davis, who her a master
ofsciencer degree in range manage
meant and forestry ecology. Is a St
Croix ecologist activist and writer.