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Tropic news. Volume 8. Issue 6.

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Title:
Tropic news. Volume 8. Issue 6.
Series Title:
Tropic news
Creator:
United States Virgin Islands. Department of Planning and Natural Resources. Division of Fish and Wildlife.
Publisher:
United States Virgin Islands. Department of Planning and Natural Resources. Division of Fish and Wildlife.
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English

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Caribbean ( LCSH )
Newspapers -- Caribbean ( LCSH )
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serial ( sobekcm )
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North America -- United States Virgin Islands
Caribbean

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University of Florida
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University of Florida
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Full Text



TROPIC NEWS


DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND NATURAL
RESOURCES


March 1996


DIVISION OF FISH AND WILDLIFE


Volume 8 Number 6


The Anegada Climate
Tracers Study
The University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) is
contributing to the scientific understanding of
global climate change. A study of the changes of
climatically significant tracers (compounds such as
CFC's and C02 found in the atmosphere as a
result of man's activities) and gases in the surface
and deep waters of the Anegada Passage has been
initiated at the University. For convenience, this
study will be called the Anegada Climate Tracers
Study (ACTS). ACTS establishes a continuous
monitoring station in a location ideal for monitor-
ing the upper Deep Western Boundary Current.
This study will produce a set of regularly sampled
data which will indicate the changes of chemical
transients known to be important in the operation
of global climate change. It will also focus on
changes in the character of North Atlantic Deep
Water that replenishes the deep Caribbean. To
achieve the goals of this project, the University's
Eastern Caribbean Center was awarded funding by
the Department of Energy's Minority Colleges and
Universities Global Change Award. UVI will
strengthen it's ability to conduct useful oceano-
graphic studies. Its students will benefit from the
substance of the research as well as from the orga-
nizing experience.
Several questions will be addressed:
(1) What are the amplitudes and the time scales
of variability of the properties of the Deep Western
Boundary Current.
(2) How do carbon dioxide and chlorofluorocar-
bon (freon) concentrations change with time in the
water column due to transport by currents and
diffusion through the thermocline.
(3) What are the magnitude and scales of vari-
ability of the transport of water and of these sig-
nals through this passage.
This study benefits from collaboration with
researchers from many reputable sources. This
research will revitalize established relationships
with other laboratories and universities and will
develop new relationships with oceanographers at
the Brookhaven National Laboratory and else-
where. UVI is seeking financial support to extend
the monitoring to ten years if results are scientifi-
cally significant.


Species of the Month


The mongoose was
originally brought to
the Caribbean from
India to help control
the rat population in
the cane fields. Nine
mongoose originally

1870 were the seed
Stock for all mongoose
Currently found
throughout the Carib-
bean, South America
and Hawaii. The small
Indian mongoose, Herpestes auropunctatus, has
since then become an integral part of the local environ-
ment.
H. auropunctatus is long and slim with short legs
and a tapered tail. The head is elongated with a pointed
muzzle. The ears are small and rounded, lying close to
the head. The claws are long, sharp, and nonretractile.
Hair is short and alternately banded grey-brown and
yellow, giving a speckled appearance to the fur.
Mongoose are generally diurnal with little to no
activity after sunset. They tend to be late risers and can
be found sleeping as late as an hour after sunrise. Most
of the day is spent hunting although there tends to be a
leisure period when the mongoose seem to "sun" them-
selves.
Mongoose eat a wide variety of animals and fruits.
Small rodents and birds make up the bulk of the mon-
goose diet. In the absence of their preferred prey, liz-
ards, chicken eggs, crabs, frogs and insects will suffice.
When encountered, a mongoose will readily attack a
snake. Along with their meat-eating food habits, mon-
goose are pest to many agricultural crops.
The average litter size is about 2 babies per pregnant
female. The mother is very protective of her offspring.
The young will remain with the mother until they reach
sexual maturity, or until she gives birth to another
litter.
The mongoose has influenced the ecology of the
territory through predation of reptiles and ground
nesting birds. However, it seems to have come into an
ecological equilibrium, and populations of both mon-
goose and their prey will probably remain stable in-
definitely.

The proceeding was summarized from a report by David W. Nellis & 4
R. Everard entitled, "The Biology of the Mongoose in the Caribbean ",Vol
LXIV. Studies on the Fauna of Curacao and Other Caribbean Islands.


r cr, -~R~e~L~B~h__l -~CRI~-~epC~~I~Pl~y







Get those permits first!

Under the Virgin Islands Indigenous and
Endangered Species Act of 1990 numerous activi-
ties require a permit. These activities include, but
are not limited to, collecting of VI indigenous or
endangered species, whether for commercial,
private, educational, or scientific use, collecting of
aquarium fish, invertebrates or "live rock", holding
in captivity or shipping of any indigenous or en-
dangered species, cutting or pruning of mangroves
(red, black or white) or import of any non-
indigenious species (snakes, etc.) into the V.I.
To apply for a permit, a Permit Application
Form must be completed and submitted. These
forms are available at the offices of the Division of
Fish and Wildlife on St.Thomas and St. Croix.
Once submitted, the application will be reviewed
by the appropriate Divisions within DPNR and will
either be approved or denied by the Commissioner
within thirty (30) days from receipt of the applica-
tion.
Permits allow the Division to restrict the impor-
tation of species harmful to the territory and pro-
tect our native species from exploitation. Although
we have not had a case of rabies in the territory,
the virus could easily be introduced by any number
of species.
Everyone benefits from these permits and they
are not meant to harass any particular group.
Compliance with these regulations ensures that
our natural resources are not harmed. This keeps
our environment healthy and safe for all Virgin
Islanders.


Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper

GOVERNMENT OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
OF THE UNITED STATES

Department of Planning and Natural Resources
Division of Fish and Wildlife
6291 Estate Nazareth 101
St. Thomas, USVI 00802-1104
(809)775-6762 (ST.T.), (809)772-1955 (ST.X.)


r.p~9BI-~.e;.3a~


&Y~


This newsletter was funded by the US
Fish and Wildlife Service, Sport Fish and
Wildlife Restoration Acts, the Caribbean
Fishery Management Council and the
Government of the VI.


BULK RATE
U.S. POSTAGE PAID
CHARLOTTE AMALIE, V.I.
PERMIT NO. 35


Address Correction Requested


So what is a wetland, anyway?

Wetlands are basically wet lands. They are often
transition zones between dry land and water ways, but
some are more isolated. The most common types of
wetlands locally are mangrove swamps, saltponds and
guts although there are many other kinds with a variety
of names What these areas have in common is what
defines them as wetlands: water, special soil, and
specialized plants.
Wetlands are fed from two main sources: surface
water and groundwater. Surface water is rain water,
runoff or water from waterbodies, such as streams,
rivers, ponds, or the ocean. The water in wetlands can
also come from under the ground -- seeping ground
water or even underground springs.
Wetlands are important to us in many ways. In
general, they help keep our environment in balance.
Wetlands provide habitat to numerous species offish,
birds, and other wildlife, including one third of
America's threatened and endangered species.
The ecological functioning of wetlands provides many
other benefits. Wetlands act in preventing floods -- they
catch, store, and slowly release runoff, particularly
important during storms.
Wetlands and wetland plants are efficient traps for
sediment and other pollutants that are washed off the
land. Caught in the wetlands, these pollutants are kept
from degrading the quality of surface and groundwater,
including our drinking water, and our nearshore marine
water.
Wetlands have played an important role in our
history, for example, they helped supply food and other
resources to early settlers. Most of all, wetlands remain
beautiful, natural areas that many of us enjoy!


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Full Text

PAGE 1

DIVISION OF FISH AND WILDLIFE Volume 8 Number 6 Snecies of the Month \\,"'',"I' ",,'/il ~'i 1-=II? )it, The mongoose was originally brought to the Caribbean from India to help control the rat population in the cane fields. Nine mongoose originally brought from India in 1870 were the seed .. stock for all mongoose I currently found throughout the Carib'--bean, South America and Hawaii. The small Indian mongoose, Herpestes auropunctatus, has since then become an integral part of the local environment. H. auropunctatus is long and slim with short legs and a tapered tail. The head is elongated with a pointed muzzle. The ears are small and rounded, lying close to the head. The claws are long, sharp, and nonretractile. Hair is short and ~lternately banded grey-brown and yellow, giving a speckled appearance to the fur. Mongoose are generally diurnal with little to no activity after sunset. They tend to be late risers and can be found sleeping as late as an hour after sunrise. Most of the day is spent hunting although there tends to be a leisure period when the mongoose seem to "sun" themselves. Mongoose eat a wide variety of animals and fruits. Small rodents and birds make up the bulk of the mongoose diet. In the absence of their preferred prey, lizards, chicken eggs, crabs, frogs and insects will suffice. When encountered, a mongoose will readily attack a snake. Along with their meat-eating food habits, mongoose are pest to many agricultural crops. The average litter size is about 2 babies per pregnant female. The mother is very protective of her offspring. The young will remain with the mother until they reach sexual maturity, or until she gives birth to another litter. The mongoose has influenced the ecology of the territory through predation of reptiles and ground nesting birds. However, it seems to have come into an ecological equilibrium, and populations of both mongoose and their prey will probably remain stable indefinitely. The Anegada Climate Tracers Study The University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) is contributing to the scientific understanding of global climate change. A study of the changes of climatically significant tracers (compounds such as CFC's and CO2 found in the atmosphere as a result of man's activities) and gases in the surface and deep waters of the Anegada Passage has been initiated at the University. For convenience, this study will be called the Anegada Climate Tracers Study (ACTS). ACTS establishes a continuous monitoring station in a location ideal for monitoring the upper Deep Western Boundary Current. This study will produce a set of regularly sampled data which will indicate the changes of chemical transients known to be important in the operation of global climate change. It will also focus on changes in the character of North Atlantic Deep Water that replenishes the deep Caribbean. Tp achieve the goals of this project, the University's Eastern Caribbean Center was awarded funding by the Department of Energy's Minority Colleges and Universities Global Change Award. UVI will strengthen it's ability to conduct useful oceanographic studies. Its students will benefit from the substance of the research as well as from the organizing experience. Several questions will be addressed: (1) What are the amplitudes and the time scales of variability of the properties of the Deep Western Boundary Current. (2) How do carbon dioxide and chlorofluorocarbon (freon) concentrations change with time in the water column due to transport by currents and diffusion through the thermocline. (3) What are the magnitude and scales ofvariability of the transport of water and of these signals through this passage. This study benefits from collaboration with researchers from many. reputable sources. This research will revitalize established relationships with other laboratories and universities and will develop new relationships with oceanographers at the Brookhaven National Laboratory and elsewhere. UVI is seeking financial support to extend the monitoring to ten years if results are scientifically significant. The preceeding was summarized from a report by David W. Nellis & C R. Everard entitled, "The Biology of the Mongoose in the Caribbean ",Vol LXIV. Studies on the Fauna of Curacao and Other Caribbean Islands.

PAGE 2

Get those permits first! So what is a wetland, anyway? Under the Virgin Islands Indigenous and Endangered Species Act of 1990 numerous activities require a permit. These activities include, but are not limited to, collecting of VI indigenous or endangered species, whether for commercial, private, educational, or scientific use, collecting of aquarium fish, invertebrates or "live rock", holding in captivity or shipping of any indigenous or endangered species, cutting or pruning of mangroves (red, black or white) or import of any nonindigenious species (snakes, etc.) into the V.I. To apply for a permit, a Permit Application Form must be completed and submitted. These forms are available at the offices of the Division of Fish and Wildlife on St. Thomas and St. Croix. Once submitted, the application will be reviewed by the appropriate Divisions within DPNR and will either be approved or denied by the Commissioner within thirty (30) days from receipt of the application. Permits allow the Division to restrict the importation of species harmful to the territory and protect our native species from exploitation. Although we have not had a case of rabies in the territory, the virus could easily be introduced by any number of species. Everyone benefits from these permits and they are not meant to harass any particular group. Compliance with these regulations ensures that our natural resources are not harmed. This keeps our environment healthy and safe for all Virgin Islanders. Wetlands are basically ~ lands.. They are often transition zones between dry land and water ways, but some are more isolated. The most common types of wetlands locally are mangrove swamps, saltponds and guts although there are many other kinds with a variety of names . What these areas have in common is what defines them as wetlands: water, special soil, and specialized plants. Wetlands are fed from two main sources: surface water and groundwater. Surface water is rain water, runoff or water from waterbodies, such as streams, rivers, ponds, or the ocean. The water in wetlands can also corne from under the ground -seeping ground water or even underground springs. Wetlands are important to us in many ways. In general, they help keep our environment in balance. Wetlands provide habitat to numerous species offish, birds, and other wildlife, including one third of America's threatened and endangered species. The ecological functioning of wetlands provides many other benefits. Wetlands act in preventing floods -they catch, store, and slowly release runoff, particularly important during storms. Wetlands and wetland plants are efficient traps for sediment and other pollutants that are washed off the land. Caught in the wetlands, these pollutants are kept from degrading the quality of surface and groundwater, including our drinking water, and our nearshore marine water. Wetlands have played an important role in our history, for example, they helped supply food and other resources to early settlers. Most of all, wetlands remain beautiful, natural areas that many of us enjoy! k~S1\&~ 51~~~ oA.~t~~ ~RA.~"O~ This newsletter was funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Acts, the Caribbean Fishery Management Council and the Governmpnt nf tnp VI Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper GOVERNMENT OF THE VIRGIN.ISLANDS OF THE UNITED STATES BULK RA1E U.S. POSTAGE PAll CHARLOT1E AMALIE, V.I. PERMIT NO. 35 Department of Planning and Natural Resources Division of Fish and Wildlife 6291 Estate Nazareth 101 St. Thomas. USVI 00802-1104 (809)775-6762 (ST.T .). (809)772-1955 (ST.X.) Address Correction Requested