Eco-educational tours


Material Information

Eco-educational tours
Series Title:
Extension bulletin - University of the Virgin Islands ; 10
Physical Description:
8 p. : chiefly col. ill., map ; 22 x 28 cm.
Davis, Olasee
O'Reilly, Rudy G
University of the Virgin Islands -- Agriculture and Natural Resources Program
University of the Virgin Islands. Cooperative Extension Service
Place of Publication:
Kingshill St. Croix. V.I.
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Environmental education -- Virgin Islands of the United States -- Saint Croix   ( lcsh )
Ecology -- Study and teaching -- Virgin Islands of the United States -- Saint Croix   ( lcsh )
Pictorial works -- Saint Croix (V.I.)   ( lcsh )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
United States Virgin Islands


General Note:
"February 1996."
Statement of Responsibility:
by Olasee Davis and Rudy G. O'Reilly, Jr.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of the Virgin Islands
Holding Location:
University of the Virgin Islands
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 49936691
System ID:

This item has the following downloads:

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
Full Text



University of the Virgin Islands
Cooperative Extension Service Dr. D. S. Padda, Director a

St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands


Olasee Davis and Rudy G. O'Reilly, Jr.
Natural Resources Specialist and
Natural Resources Agent, respectively,
UVI Cooperative Extension Service
Agriculture and Natural Resources Program

Extension Bulletin No. 10
February 1996

Copies of this bulletin available from:
Cooperative Extension Service
University of the Virgin Islands
RR02, Box 10,000, Kingshill, St. Croix 00850
(809) 692-4060/4080

Clarice C. Clarke
Public Information Specialist

Eco-EdueAowa Tours is desk-top published by the University orf the Virgin Islands Cooperative Extension Servioe, Dr. D. S. Padda, Director. Contents ofthis publication constlute
public property. No endorsement of products or firms is intended, nor is criticism implied of thue not mentioned. Issued by the Virgin Islands Cooperative Extension Service and the U.S.
Department of Agriculture in furtherainc of the Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914. Extension programs and policies are consistent with federal and state laws and regulations an non-
discrimlnation regarding race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age disability and gender preference. Thanks are due to Marvin Williams, Christine Henry and Raquel Santiago-

I mm"


As part of the Natural Resources Environmental Educa-
tion program, the University of the Virgin Islands
Cooperative Extension Service offers field trips to schools,
summer camps and other interested groups. These field trips
help participants understand and appreciate the unique
resources that we are fortunate to have in the complex
ecosystems of the Virgin Islands. The following are brief
descriptions of the various sites. For more information contact
the UVI Cooperative Extension Service at 778-9491/ 692-4080
or 692/4060.

2 038664


rrhe Annaly and Wills Bays hike is the most difficult. It
.a encompasses a moist forest, a rocky shoreline, slopes,
valleys, small and large pools of water, and an algae forest
with various plant and animal life. Along the shore ofAnnaly
Bay some coral reefs are exposed creating underwater
caves and, occasionally, saltwater waterfalls. The four mile

Exposed coral reefs can be seen along the shoreline of Annaly Bay

The moist forest ecosystem consists of rare plants. These
include the sea hibiscus and sea boxwood along the
coastline, and anthuriums and tyre palms along the hillside.
This area also has medicinal plants and fruit trees like
mango, guava and kenip. Hikers can hear and see pearly-
eyed thrashers, common ground doves, bananaquits, red-tailed
hawks, bridled quail doves, and other birds along the valleys
and hills. Deer, although very common in this area, are seldom

Students from the Ricardo Richards Elementary School encountered steep slopes on teir
hike to Annaly and Wills Bays.

hike passes over very hilly terrain, ranging from sea level
to about 700 ft., through old mahogany stands and a sugar
plantation. The hike continues toward a partly sandy shore
with exposed coral formations.


rhge Caledonia Valley, locally called the "rainforest," is a
good example of St. Croix's moist forest ecosystem. This
is one of the few areas where water can still be found year-
round. The two and a half hour hike begins at an old quarry
with fantastic sedimentary rock exposures, continues along
the gut and culminates at a waterfall about 200 ft. above sea
level. Hiking the entire Caledonia Valley would require about
nine hours.

planted fruit trees such as coconut, cocoa, and mango. Most of
the plants, however, are native trees, shrubs and vines.
Medicinal plants are also common in this area. Certain trees
have epiphytes on their branches. Lichens, liverworts and
mosses are abundant. Water holes can also be found with fish,
fresh water shrimp, hermit crabs and, occasionally, fresh water
crabs. The endangered Puerto Rican screech owl, blue pigeons,
pearly-eyed thrashers and quail doves make the Caledonia
Valley their home. During the winter months, many migratory
birds, such as the scarlet tanager, American redstarts, various
warblers and even a peregrine falcon can be found in the
Caledonia Valley. If you are lucky, you might see a deer
drinking at a water hole.


Many types of ferns, including the rare swamp fern, can be
found along the gut. People who once inhabited the area

Built in the 1920s by the UPS. Navy, Creque Dam was origi-
nally intended to supply Frederiksted with water. Known
as Creque Dam "Rainforest," much of the area along the gut
has been used for livestock. Consequently, pigs and cattle are
often seen along the road and gut. However, there are areas
still covered with tall trees giving the appearance of a
rainforest. There are trees with air plants and Spanish moss
hanging from branches, and water trickling in some places
along the gut. This area is also used for horseback riding and
gathering fruits during the summer time. Birds can also be
heard and seen flying through the trees. This easy two and a
half mile hike focuses on the medicinal plants along the road.
The hike begins at the intersection leading to the Tranbergs'
estate in Estate Mount Victory and ends at Sprat Hall Beach.

and trees can be found along the coastline. This two and a
half mile hike starts from the bay estuary of red mangrove
and heads northwest toward the Howard M. Wall Boy Scout
Camp. The hike lasts about two and a half hours.


L ocated on the south shore of the island, the pond is the
second largest salt pond in the Virgin Islands. The pond
has a large mangrove stand along the beach, which serves as
a habitat for resident and migratory birds (some of which are
endangered) and a nursery for juvenile fish. Some fishermen
use the pond as a staging point, some small game hunting
occurs in the littoral forest, and a few fishermen harvest crabs
from the pond mudflats. Along the south shore at Great Pond,
sea grass beds and coral reefs can be seen. Coastal plants,
such as sea purslane, beach bean, sea grapes, and other shrubs

or~ --
I *... SA



r e Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecologi-
Scal Preserve contains one of the few intact natural
ecosystems left in the Virgin Islands. This preserve has fresh
water streams, salt ponds, a mangrove forest, flood plain, and
an estuary with extensive seagrass beds. The mangrove forest
ecosystem is also one of the best in the Virgin Islands. Severely
damaged by hurricane Hugo in 1989, the forest is slowly
recovering. The area is known historically for Columbus'
landing, a large Indian settlement, as well as many
endangered plants and animals. The two hour hike passes
along the old river bed and through the mangrove forest.
Hikers learn about fossils, oysters, crabs, and mangrove ecology
S on the swamp hike. At the landing site, they learn about the
history of the area.

The cactus and thorn scrub, of the dry forest on St. Croix's
southeast shore, are unique in the Lesser Antilles. The
dry coastal vegetation has few large trees. Many oddities can
be found along the coastline. These include tree fern trunks,
bamboo and sea burger seeds, all originating from islands in
the Lesser Antilles and finding their way to our shore. This
area is also known for the endangered green and hawksbill
sea turtles. Deer are occasionally seen and, at the beginning
of the year, dolphins can be seen offshore. This hike focuses
mainly on coastal plants and the coral reef ecosystems along
the shore.Although the three hour, three and a half mile hike
is mostly along a sandy shore and in full sun, the constant
southeasterly wind keeps hikers cool and refreshed.


This ecological preserve, once inhabited, offers a cultural
and an agricultural history of plants and animal life.The
preserve encompasses a 1796 windmill tower, 1780 animal

mill, great house, and other historical architectural
structures integrated into the forest environment. In 1917,
the St. Croix Labor Union led by D. Hamilton Jackson
acquired Estate Hard Labor and Grove Place. The land
remained under Union ownership until 1994 when Samuel


Raphael purchased the property.
Much of this forest land has steep slopes on either side of a
gut with a dense gallery of moist forest. Along the gut, fruit
trees, native royal palms, ferns, medicinal plants, sweet pea,
guavaberries and other plants unique to the northwestern hills
of St. Croix can be found. In addition, birds and other animal
life add to this forest ecosystem. This hike lasts about an
hour and a half.

-I---- IL

In 1991, the Foundation for the University of the Virgin
Islands transferred 300 acres of property to Hess Oil
Virgin Islands Corporation (HOVIC). As part of the transfer
agreement, a monetary donation was given to the university
for the development and maintenance of 52 acres of
wetlands on St. Croix.

The area is locally known as Billy French Ponds or Cassava
Gardens and is a critical area for birds. It is also important to
the island's wetland system because it is wet year-round. Many
of the bird species which visit the reserve are listed on either
or both the federal or local endangered species list. Turtles
also nest there. To preserve this precious wildlife reserve,

3 3138 00145 930
Marcia Taylor, a marine advisor in the Eastern Caribbean
Center's V.I. Marine Advisory Service on St. Croix, manages a
project to develop this property.


4k, =LIP

Watefall near e Sprng Field quarryin Gvw Place,

Signature Not Verified

UVI Library

Digitally signed by UVI Library
DN: cn=UVI Library, o=St. Croix,
Date: 2002.05.29 09:18:27 -08'00'