Citation
Tropic news. Volume 9. Issue 3.

Material Information

Title:
Tropic news. Volume 9. Issue 3.
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.
Publication Date:
Language:
English

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Subjects / Keywords:
Caribbean ( LCSH )
Newspapers -- Caribbean ( LCSH )
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serial ( sobekcm )
Spatial Coverage:
North America -- United States Virgin Islands
Caribbean

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University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
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Copyright United States Virgin Islands. Department of Planning and Natural Resources. Division of Fish and Wildlife.. Permission granted to University of Florida to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.

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Full Text

TROPIC NE WS


S DEPARTMENT-OF PLANNING AND NATURAL
RESOURCES
December 1996


Special visors on stadium lights ex-
pected to save endangered sea turtles in
U.S. Virgin Islands
A modification to stadium lights located near
turtle nesting beaches in the Sandy Point National
Wildlife Refuge in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands,
will save the lives of thousands of turtle hatchlings
each year. According to U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service Southeast Regional Director Noreen K.
Clough, beach lighting can disorient newly hatched
turtles. Instead of instinctively heading for the
ocean, the turtles are attracted inland and perish.
The installation of visors on the stadium lights
of the Paul E. Joseph Stadium in Frederiksted is
being performed in connection with a Memoran-
dum of Understanding signed recently by the
Service and the stadium's owners, V.I. Depart. of
Housing, Parks and Recreation. The MOU was
developed to assist in conservation of endangered
and threatened sea turtles that nest and hatch on
the Sandy Point refuge.
This refuge is the largest nesting of the endan-
gered leatherback sea turtle in the United States,
and one of only thirteen significant leatherback
nesting beaches in the world. It is the site of an
intensive research and conservation project that
was initiated in 1981 by the Division of Fish and
Wildlife. The project is designed to protect the
turtles and increase hatchling production.
As part of this project, researchers document the
number of hatchlings leaving the beach each sea-
son. Although hatchling production has increased
since the beginning of the project, each year re-
searchers have documented severe disorientation
of hatchlings by the lights of Frederiksted. Biolo-
gists found that this disorientation is especially
pronounced when lights of the Paul E. Joseph
Stadium are on, and it results in hatchlings head-
ing toward Frederiksted when they leave the nest
instead of going toward the water.
Researchers estimate that 35 percent of endan-
gered leatherback hatchlings at the Sandy Point
refuge are affected by stadium lights approxi-
mately 4,000 to 6,000 hatchlings in any given year.
Clough noted that endangered green and hawksbill
sea turtles also nest in the refuge and are also
likely affected by the lights. (continue)


~L 99 I rl I rI


DIVISION OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Volume 9 Number 3


Merry Christmas and a Happy New
Year to all from the staff at the
Division of Fish and Wildlife


Disorientation resulting from street, building,
and stadium lights near the beach increases the
time the turtles spend on the beach and makes
them very vulnerable to entanglement in vegeta-
tion; predation by crabs, night herons, and stray
dogs; dehydration; and exhaustion. The Service has
been working with coastal property owners and
conservation agencies throughout the southeast U.
S. to solve this problem.


Safe Anchorage

Coast Guard navigation aids, such as buoys and
numbered pilings, mark channels used by commer-
cial and recreational ships and boats. It's not only
illegal to tie up to them. It can be fatal.
Each year, commercial vessels ram and sink
boats anchored in navigation channels or tied to
buoys. Commercial vessels, including towboats and
tugboats, operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
A towboat can travel one mile in seven minutes
and can take more than one mile to stop. If you are
tied to a channel marker and spot a moving tug or
towboat 1,000 feet away, you have less than 60
seconds to get out of the way.


Quote
"The most important challenge for tropical
ecology is for tropical ecologists to stop intellectual-
izing and start implementing what needs to be
done."
Dan Janzen ( 1988)







California Condors are released in
Northern Arizona

Six California Condors were released by the
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Peregrine
Fund from the Vermilion Cliffs of northern Arizona
on December 12th. This is the first time the giant
birds have been seen in the skies of the American
Southwest since 1924.
The released condors were bred in captivity in
California at the Los Angeles Zoo and at the Per-
egrine Fund's World Center for Birds of Prey in
Boise, Idaho. They were transferred in late October
to the Vermilion Cliffs, where they have been kept
away from people and allowed to acclimate to their
surroundings. Officially, they will be classified as
an "experimental, nonessential" population under
the Endangered Species Act, which allows for the
birds to be managed with fewer restrictions than
those normally covering endangered species. The
classification also is designed to ensure that pro-
tected, reintroduced species are compatible with
current and planned activities in the project area.
Adult condors weigh up to 20 pounds and have a
wingspan of nearly 10 feet. In prehistoric times,
the bird ranged from Canada to Mexico, across the
southern United States to Florida, and north on
the East Coast to New York State. The birds man-
aged to maintain a strong population until the
settlement of the West, when shooting, poisoning,
and egg collecting began to take a heavy toll. By
1987, the birds' population in the wild had
dwindled to seven. In what was then a controver-
sial decision, the Service decided to remove the
remaining birds from the wild for captive breeding
in a last-ditch effort to avert the condor's extinc-
tion.


Sea Cucumbers and Arthritis


Donald Goldman, M.D. reported (Aquarius,
June 1996) that he had discovered and experimen-
tally tested an ancient and highly effective Chinese
therapy for the symptomatic relief of arthritis. He
used powder of a dried sea cucumber (Hahodeima
atra). He is convinced of the effectiveness of sea
cucumber in treating muscular inflammatory
diseases, most notably rheumatoid arthritis and
osteoarthritis. The French name for sea cucumber
is Beche-de Mer; the Chinese and Japanese name
is trepang.
Goldman cites other medical experiments in
this arena and notes that the successful sea cucum-
ber therapy is "one of typical and numerous holistic
medical remedies; it helps but we do not know
how."
Sea cucumbers live on sandy bottoms or during
the day beneath coral or rocks. They feed by pass-
ing sediment through the gut and digesting any
organic material contained in it or by "catching"
detritus on mucous-covered "tentacles" centered
around the mouth. Breathing is by means of the
skin, tube feet or internal respiratory trees. The
body wall often contains a toxin, called
"holothurin," which makes them distasteful.
For more information about sea cucumbers, call
(800) 851-3551 (USA).
IOCARIBE NEWS, November 1996, No. 19


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.


Donna M. Griffin Editor
Ralf H. Boulon Jr. Chief of Environmental Education


GOVERNMENT OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
OF THE UNITED STATES
***4<^
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


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


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Full Text

PAGE 1

Volume 9 Number 3 Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all from the staff at the Division of Fish and Wildlife t. Disorientation resulting from street, building, and stadium lights near the beach increases the time the turtles spend on the beach and makes them very vulnerable to entanglement in vegetation; predation by crabs, night herons, and stray dogs; dehydration; and exhaustion. The Service has been working with coastal property owners and conservation agencies throughout the southeast U. S. to solve this oroblem. Safe Anchorage Coast Guard navigation aids, such as buoys and numbered pilings, mark channels used by commercial and recreational ships and boats. It's not only illegal to tie up to them. It can be fatal. Each year, commercial vessels ram and sink boats anchored in navigation channels or tied to buoys. Commercial vessels, including towboats and tugboats, operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. A towboat can travel one mile in seven minutes and can take more than one mile to stop. If you are tied to a channel marker and spot a moving tug or towboat 1,000 feet away, you have less than 60 seconds to get out of the way. Special visors on stadium lights expected to save endangered sea turtles in U.S. Virgin Islands A modification to stadium lights located near turtle nesting beaches in the Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, will save the lives of thousands of turtle hatchlings each year. According to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southeast Regional Director Noreen K Clough, beach lighting can disorient newly hatched turtles. Instead of instinctively heading for the ocean, the turtles are attracted inland and perish. The installation of visors on the stadium lights of the Paul E. Joseph Stadium in Frederiksted is being performed in connection with a Me~orandum of Understanding signed recently by the Service and the stadium's owners, V.I. Depart. of Housing, Parks and Recreation. The MOU was developed to assist in conservation of endangered and threatened sea turtles that nest and hatch on the Sandy Point refuge. This refuge is the largest nesting of the endangered leatherback sea turtle in the United States, and one of only thirteen significant leatherback nesting beaches in the world. It is the site of an intensive research and conservation project that was initiated in 1981 by the Division of Fish and Wildlife. The project is designed to protect the turtles and increase hatchling production. As part of this project, researchers document the number of hatchlings leaving the beach each season. Although hatchling production has increased since the beginning of the project, each year researchers have documented severe disorientation of hatchlings by the lights of Frederiksted. Biologists found that this disorientation is especially pronounced when lights of the Paul E. Joseph Stadium are on, and it results in hatchlings heading toward Frederiksted when they leave the nest instead of going toward the water. Researchers estimate that 35 percent of endangered leatherback hatchlings at the Sandy Point refuge are affected by stadium lights approximately 4,000 to 6,000 hatchlings in any given year. Clough noted that endangered green and hawksbill sea turtles also nest in the refuge and are also likely affected by the lights. ( continue) Quote " The most important challenge for tropical ecology is for tropical ecologists to stop intellectualizing and start implementing what needs to be done. " Dan Janzen ( 1988)

PAGE 2

Sea Cucumbers and Arthritis California Condors are released in Northern Arizona Six California Condors were released by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Peregrine Fund from the Vermilion Cliffs of northern Arizona on December 12th. This is the first time the giant birds have been seen in the skies of the American Southwest since 1924. The released condors were bred in captivity in California at the Los Angeles Zoo and at the Peregrine Fund's World Center for Birds of Prey in Boise, Idaho. They were transferred in late October to the Vermilion Cliffs, where they have been kept away from people and allowed to acclimate to their surroundings. Officially, they will be classified as an "experimental, nonessential" population under the Endangered Species Act, which allows for the birds to be managed with fewer restrictions than those normally covering endangered species. The classification also is design,ed to ensure that protected, reintroduced species are compatible with current and planned activities in the project area. Adult condors weigh up to 20 pounds and have a wingspan of nearly 10 feet. In prehistoric times, the bird ranged from Canada to Mexico, across the southern United States to Florida, and north on the East Coast to New York State. The birds managed to maintain a strong population until the settlement of the West, when shooting, poisoning, and egg collecting began to take a heavy toll. By 1987, the birds' population in the wild had dwindled to seven. In what was then a controversial decision, the Service decided to remove the remaining birds from the wild for captive breeding in a last-ditch effort to avert the condor's extinction. Donald Goldman, M.D. reported (Aquarius, June 1996) that he had discovered and experimentally tested an ancient and highly effective Chinese therapy for the symptomatic relief of arthritis. He used powder of a dried sea cucumber (Hahodeima ,at.r.a). He is convinced of the effectiveness of sea cucumber in treating muscular inflammatory diseases, most notably rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. The French name for sea cucumber is Beche-de Mer; the Chinese and Japanese name is trepang. Goldman cites other medical experiments in this arena and notes that the successful sea cucumber therapy is "one of typical and numerous holistic medical remedies; it helps but we do not know how." Sea cucumbers live on sandy bottoms or during the day beneath coral or rocks. They feed by passing sediment through the gut and digesting any organic material contained in it or by "catching" detritus on mucous-covered "tentacles" centered around the mouth. Breathing is by means of the skin, tube feet or internal respiratory trees. The body wall often contains a toxin, called "holothurin," which makes them distasteful. For more information about sea cucumbers, call (800) 851-3551 (USA). IOCARIBE NEWS, November 1996, No. 19 ~&~ (~~) ~ A.'t\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 Government of the VI. Donna M. Griffin Editor RalfH. Boulon Jr. Chief of EnvironmentaI Education BULK RATE U.S. POSTAGE PAID CHARLOn"E AMALIE, V.I. PERMIT NO. 35 GOVERNMENT OF 11IE VIRGIN ISLANDS OF 11IE 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.) Address Correction Requested Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper