To promote the conservation of nurseries for sharks and rays

To promote the conservation of nurseries for sharks and rays

To promote the conservation of nurseries for sharks and rays

Une femelle requin tigre filmée par Kap Natirel A female tiger shark filmed by Kap Natirel
Une femelle requin tigre filmée par Kap Natirel A female tiger shark filmed by Kap Natirel

Sharks Filmed At A Depth Of 8 To 30 Meters

From August 16-20, 2021, the Réserve Naturelle mobilized both human and nautical resources in collaboration with the association Kap Natirel in Guadeloupe, represented by Océane Beaufort, head of the project and coordinator of the Reguar network, which studies the sharks and rays of the French Antilles. Their goal was to complete an inventory of the species of sharks present in Saint Martin, thanks to financing from the French Office for Biodiversity (OFB) for all of the French islands in the Caribbean. The program “pou pwoteksion rékin karib” (“for protection of Caribbean sharks” in Creole) comprised installing five cameras along the coast, at a depth of 8 to 30 meters, letting them film for an hour and a half, then changing their position, from the Lowlands as far as Oyster Pond. These cameras on tripods were adapted to attract the sharks, who were in turn attracted to fish they could not reach. The operation was a success and allows for the identification of several species of sharks—of different sizes and at different stages of their life. This highlight of the event was seeing a female tiger shark carrying a beacon on her fin. The beacon had been implanted a few months earlier by the DCNA (Dutch Caribbean Alliance), Sint Maarten Nature Foundation, the Saba Conservation Foundation, Beneath the Waves, and Caribbean Shark Coalition, as part of a project studying the reproduction of tiger sharks. The diving association, Jorakhae Freediving School, also participated in the dives.

Un requin citron juvénile - A juvenile lemon shark © Julien Chalifour
Un requin citron juvénile - A juvenile lemon shark © Julien Chalifour

Deux membres du réseau REGUAR d’étude et de conservation des requins et des raies en Guadeloupe ont été accueillis par le Pôle scientifique de la Réserve naturelle fin avril 2019. Cette rencontre a été l’occasion de renouveler les observations initiées depuis plusieurs années à Saint-Martin afin d’identifier des zones de nurserie et constater si des juvéniles étaient présents dans ces espaces de faible profondeur et proches du rivage, à l’abri de leurs prédateurs.

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