The Trust Times - National Trust for the Cayman Islands

The Trust Times
Winter 2014
Governor’s Conservation Awards Winners
Also inside this edition:
Pirate’s Week Celebrations
Cayman Bullfinch: New Findings
Scale Infestation becoming critical
From the Director’s Desk...
Christina Pineda, Executive Director
I hope you are having a great 2015 thus far!
The new year has brought with it a
myriad of changes starting with a new Trust
Council which was elected at the Annual
General Meeting last September. A full list of
elected members can be found on page 8.
We also have our annual giving
campaigns the Land Reserve Fund, Save our Sites
Campaign and the Blue Iguana Sponsorship
programme which help fund our environmental
and historic projects throughout the year. This
year, in addition to the usual annual giving options ($2,500 and up), we
have included a monthly giving option to allow those who would like to
support the Trust’s important work to do so in a way that they can
manage (see adjacent page for details).
We would also like to encourage our faithful members to renew
their memberships if you haven’t already done so. Benefits of
membership include discounts at all of our events; speaker’s series;
retail store discounts; QEII Botanic Park entrance fee discount and
massive savings on entrance fees to National Trust properties in the UK
and other countries. We are also working with some local business
owners in order to provide our members with additional membership
perks at businesses across the three islands. Stay tuned to our social
media channels and weekly email alerts for these exciting new benefits.
If one of your resolutions this year is to give more of your time to
worthy causes, we can help you achieve this goal! We have a
number of exciting events and projects happening over the next few
months (including our biggest fundraiser of the year, our “Hatitude” Gala,
in April) and we need your help to make them all a success! Please contact
[email protected] if you are interested in helping.
We are excited to partner with you this year to secure a better
future for our precious Islands - Christina
In this issue
From the Director’s Desk
Current Partnership
Governor’s Conservation
Scale Infestation Alert
New Status for Bullfinch
New Flora findings in Brac
Activity Round Up
Eco-Services Report
Volunteer Profile
Heritage Heroes Latest
The Trust Times is produced quarterly in
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands by the
National Trust for the Cayman Islands
Editorial & Production
Christina Pineda, Danielle Watler
Front Cover Photo: Heritage
Heroes Pirate’s Week Float
Stuart Mailer, Wallace Platts, Patricia
Bradley, Danielle Watler, Karie Bounds,
Christina Pineda, Catherine Childs
 Thurs, February 12th - “For the love of Food”Cooking
Soiree @ Osetra Bay
 Sat, February 21st - Families in the Wild: Nature Scavenger Hunt @
QEII Botanic Park
 Sat, February 28th – Red Sky at Night @ Harquail Theatre
 Wed, March 10th - Lecture Series (Details TBA)
 Sat, March 28th - Earth Hour Event @ Camana Bay Paseo
 Sun, April 19th - Inaugural Earth Day Kite Festival @ Pedro Castle
 Sat, April 25th – National Trust Gala “Hatitude” @ the Festival Green
#558A South Church Street
PO Box 31116 Grand Cayman
Cayman Islands KY1-1205
Tel: (345) 749-1121
Current Partnership
The Land Reserve Fund
This Trust is working hard to ensure that through a system of
protected areas our native habitats, home to our endemic species of
flora and fauna, are protected for future generations. To do this we
need your help. The combined efforts and generosity of many people
will help make this a reality.
The Land Reserve Fund was created specifically to hold
donations earmarked for land purchase. Donations to the Fund go
towards the purchase and management of environmentally important
Now you can help us save our natural
environment monthly or annually
A recurring monthly gift of $10, $25, $50 or more goes a long way
towards protecting our precious forests, wetlands and species. Visit the
online donation page at to make your gift
Save our Sites Campaign
This year, the Trust has set an annual fundraising goal of CI$30,000 to
assist with the repair and restoration of Nurse Leila’s House in West
Bay. Your gift of $100, $500, $1,000 or $5,000 can make all the
difference in preserving our priceless heritage.
Your gift is extremely important to the National Trust
because it provides resources that make an immediate impact. You can
help us continue to serve you and your loved ones by ensuring that
important parts of our history are still around for you to enjoy today,
and for future generations to enjoy as well.
CI $500
Annual sponsorship cover the actual cost of care,
whether this be cage maintenance and feeding in
captivity, or field monitoring in the wild. Any Blue
Iguana can only have one sponsor at a time. Visits to see
your sponsored iguana can be arranged, depending on
whether your iguana is still captive, or is lucky to be
released into a protected habitat. Sponsorships are
renewable for as long as the iguana lives.
CI $1,000
If you are interesting in naming one of the Grand
Cayman Blue Iguanas in the captive facility or roaming
free here is some useful information:
Naming is for life – once named, a Blue Iguana carries
that name permanently, and the name will be used in
our databases and in the International Studbook for the
species. Naming is a significant privilege, and carries a
one-off, $1,000 price tag – which goes to help the
operation of the Blue Iguana Recovery Programme.
Both sponsorship and naming involve frame-ready
certificates and a photograph of the iguana, but the real
reward is knowing that you have forged a personal
connection in helping to save one of the world’s most
endangered iguanas!
Other Sponsorship Opportunities
CI $2,500
Our scientists are looking into satellite tracking of annual
Iguana movements. This project will answer many
questions regarding the females and their nesting. We
know that the female are traveling some distance to
deposit eggs, but where do they go? How far and for
how long? Your sponsorship will allow the programme to
acquire radio transmitters and other specific tools that
will be able to answer these questions.
Visit to help us protect this endemic species or
email: [email protected]
Nurse Leila’s House
Governor’s Conservation Awards
Winners of the Governors Conservation Award along with Her Excellency Governor Kilpatrick
Finalists and distinguished guests gathered at Her
Excellency the Governor’s Residence on Wednesday,
November 19th for the biennial Governor’s Conservation
Awards. The Awards, which were developed by the
National Trust and endorsed by HE Governor Helen
Kilpatrick, aim to recognise outstanding achievement in the
field of historic preservation and environmental
conservation in the Cayman Islands.
Dr. Katrina Jun won the prestigious title of
Conservationist of the Year as leader of the “Save the
Ironwood Forest” campaign, “Protect South Sound”
community group which was formed to object to
irresponsible coastal developments in South Sound and
co-founder of the environmental advocacy group
Sustainable Cayman. Dr Jurn proved that private citizens
can make a difference and change outcomes by saving
important and unique environmental treasures. Geddes
Hislop from Cayman Turtle Farm and Neil Van Nierkerk,
Manager of Southern Cross Resort were among the
shortlisted finalists.
Divetech Cayman Islands received the Corporate
Conservation Award notably for being a Green Globe
internationally certified business that focuses on solar
power, renewable energy, recycling and water
conservation. Focusing on ocean safety and other
environmentally conscious topics, Divetech has put into
action an after school program and Kids sea camp to create
awareness for future generations.
Caribbean Utilities Company (CUC)
and Cayman Islands Brewery were
runners up in this category.
Green Globe certified,
Winner of the Tourism
Conservation Award Compass Point
Dive Resort has been has been
instrumental in providing naturebased outdoor activities along with
ongoing education initiatives which
highlight the importance of
protecting the reefs in the Cayman
Islands. Runners up in this category
were Six Senses Eco Tour and the
Cayman Turtle Farm.
Sponsored by Cayman
National Bank, the Heritage
Preservation Award went to Swanky
Kitchen Band who has been
dedicated to preserving traditional
kitchen band music for future
generations. Alvin McLaughlin and
Lizzie Powell were runners up.
Marine biology student at
Cambridge University, Cody Panton
received the Lois Blumenthal Youth
Conservationist Award, a new
category added to this year’s award
ceremony which recognized a young
person between the ages of 15 and
25 for conservation work with native species. Panton has
done extensive study of fishing pressure, coral bleaching
and disease, lionfish, barrel sponge distribution, the
importance of Marine Parks, the recruitment of larval fish
between the islands, as well as
advocating for the continued
protection of the Nassau grouper.
University student Tayvanis
Oyog from Cayman Brac was the
runner up in this new category for his
work with turtle nest monitoring and
Cayman Brac parrots.
The Trust would like to thank
Her Excellency Governor Helen
Kilpatrick for sponsoring the awards
and the Governor’s Office for its
support with award ceremony
The next Governor’s
Conservation Awards are
scheduled for November 2016.
Trust Dream Team (from left): Denise Bodden, Danielle Watler, Karie Bounds, Christina
Pineda, Governor HE Kilpatrick, Catherine Childs, Stuart Mailer, Clare Lumsden, Paul
Watler and Badir Awe.
New Scale Insects Pose Threat to Wildlife
Stuart Mailer, Trust Field Officer
Over the last several years, an alarming increase in scale
infestations of native trees has been observed. Because
these infestations may have serious consequences for our
wildlife, a meeting was held on November 24th 2014
between representatives of the National Trust,
Department of Environment (DOE), Department of
Agriculture (DOA) to discuss the situation.
Scale insects are usually parasites of plants,
feeding on sap drawn directly from the host. The scale
infestations are themselves unsightly, and cause wilting,
loss of leaves, branch die-back and even death of the
host. The insects also exude a sweet liquid in minute
droplets which drifts as a fine mist. This encourages the
growth of a species of fungus, resulting in black soot
covering the infected plants and everything else nearby.
Besides being unsightly the black soot blocks sunlight
from the leaves of plants, preventing them from
photosynthesizing effectively.
Recently, two new species of scale insects have
been identified in Cayman.
The Croton Scale
This pest was first detected in Cayman in 2013,
and has caught the attention of Department of
Agriculture, (DOA) as it is a destructive pest of a number
of fruit trees, as well as ornamentals. The Croton scale
also attacks several native species, including Wild Fig and
Red Birch. DOA has published a pamphlet regarding
control of this scale. They have also recently begun a
limited effort at biological control using a species of
ladybug brought in from abroad. While this is likely to be
an effective method of control In the long term, at
present heavy infestations of the scale can be seen to be
Photo credit: Lyle Buss, University of Florida
stressing and possibly destroying some native trees, most
notably, Wild Fig. Hopefully, the threat of this species of
scale to native wildlife will diminish as the numbers of
ladybugs increase.
The Lobate Lac Scale
The second new species of scale was first
identified in Florida, where it attacks a wide variety of
woody stemmed plants. This scale has started to affect
numerous trees and shrubs in the Mastic Reserve. In
Florida, it has been reported as a pest of fruit trees,
including Mango, Neesberry and Avacado, and it attacks
a long list of wild trees, also native to Cayman. This list
includes our three Mangrove species, Mastic, Pompero,
Candlewood, Fiddlewood, Cherry, Strawberry,
Sweetwood, Birch and again, Wild Fig.
According to the Institute of Food and Agricultural
Sciences (IFAS) of the University of Florida, invasion of
natural areas is of paramount concern. Heavy infestations
have been observed on diverse native plant species in
numerous natural areas of southern Florida. Most of the
native woody plants that are hosts of lobate lac scale in
Florida are also native to the Antilles, implying that
natural areas in the Caribbean Region could be
They go on to state that the practical long-term
option for control of lobate lac scale is via biological
control with natural enemies. However the native home
of this species is not known, complicating research efforts
to find natural enemies of the pest.
The IFAS website states that control with
insecticides is the only known short-term option, and that
products containing imidacloprid, a systemic insecticide,
have been tested and found to be effective.
Threat of scale insects to native fauna
Many of the affected native plants are important
food sources for birds, bats and other animals living in the
forest. Even if the plants are not killed by the scale, their
production of fruit is likely to be reduced. Most alarming
is the scale infestation of the Wild Fig Trees, which seem
to be particularly vulnerable to the pest. In heavily
infested areas, such as Spotts, Wild Fig Trees can be seen
at various stages of attack, including death of part or all
of the trees.
Wild Figs in Spotts area showing heavy scale infestation and leaf loss
Critical importance of Wild Figs to fruit dependant
Fig species have all evolved symbiotic
relationships with species of minute wasp. Figs produce a
fruit-like structure termed a syconium, which contains
tiny unfertilized flowers. The wasp lays eggs in some of
the flowers, while spreading pollen and fertilizing others.
As the young females emerge from the syconium, they
pick up pollen from the male flowers. They then carry the
pollen to other figs at the required stage of syconium
development. Without
available syconia the wasps
would die without laying
eggs. The Figs and the
wasps are absolutely
dependant on each other
for survival. As a result of
this relationship, Figs have
evolved to continuously
produce fruit.
This fact results in
the Figs being critically
important to wildlife; most
plants produce fruit
seasonally, but there are
always some Fig trees
bearing fruit. This provides
a year-round food source
for our animals which rely
on fruit to survive. If we lose
the figs, or their ability to
consistently produce fruit,
this could conceivably result
in the loss of many of our fruit eating birds, bats and
other obligate fruit eaters.
Combating the threat
Control of the Lobate Lac scale in natural forest
such as the Mastic Reserve using insecticides appears
impracticable. As a first step in combating this threat, the
Trust has agreed with DOA to catalogue which native
plant species are being affected, and to collect specimens
of infected plants and place these in vials containing
alcohol for expert examination abroad.
A cross-section through the syconium of Ficus racemosa. The fig
wasps are also seen.
Photo credit: Prashanth Nuggehalli Srinivas
New Taxonomic Status for Cayman Bullfinch
A major journal Bulletin of the British Ornithologists’ Club
has published a paper written by several of the Caribbean
region’s prominent ornithologists, including Orlando
Garrido, Jim Wiley and
Patricia E. Bradley, author of
several editions of Birds of
the Cayman Islands. A
peer-reviewed journal, the
Bulletin of the British
Ornithologists’ Club is
published quarterly, and has
been in circulation since
1892. Regarded as an
essential reference, the
Bulletin specializes in short
papers on taxonomy and has
an extensive circulation.
Renewed interest in the
taxonomic status of the
monospecific genus
Melopyrrha was recently
generated when avid birders
noted differences in the
songs between respective
islands’ bullfinches. The
new paper proposes that
the bullfinch native to Grand
Cayman and Cuba be
recognized as two endemic
Taylor’s Bullfinch
species: Cuban Bullfinch on
Cuba, and Taylor’s Bullfinch
Melopyrrha taylori on Grand
Cayman, the original name given by the ornithologist who
first identified it in 1896. Later ornithologists grouped the
two species together with subspecies on each island. It is
now up to the American Ornithologists Union (members of
which peer reviewed the paper) to formally recognize the
new species, a process that often takes two to three years.
Locally known as “Black Sparrow,” the bullfinch male
is a small glossy black bird with white stripes on the wings.,
the female is greyish brown and duller. The bullfinch once
occurred throughout Grand Cayman but is now mostly
confined to forests and shrublands in interior of the central
and eastern districts. Instead of being called Taylor’s
Bullfinch it is likely, as in the case of the Cayman Parrot, to
be referred to colloquially as the Cayman Bullfinch. “When
leading nature tours, I’d always tell my guests, ‘That’s a
Cayman Bullfinch. You’ll note the references refer to it as a
Cuban Bullfinch, because it’s technically an endemic
subspecies and not its own species. But, as I’ve never heard
one singing in Spanish, I’m calling it a Cayman
Bullfinch,’” said Paul Watler, Environmental Programmes
Manager at the National Trust for the Cayman Islands.
Over 250 bird
species have been
recorded from the
Cayman Islands, with 50
breeding birds and 16
endemic subspecies.
Previously, the
taxonomic status of the
bullfinch meant that it
only counted as one of
17 endemic subspecies
and the Grand Cayman
Thrush was the only
endemic bird in the
Cayman Islands. It
became extinct in the
early 20th century,
probably though loss of
primary forest habitat
due to logging in the
previous two centuries.
“The work of the
National Trust for the
Cayman Islands serves to
benefit Taylor’s Bullfinch.
The basic tenet of the
National Trust’s
Programmes is that the
best way to protect Cayman’s native wildlife is to
preserve the habitats they depend upon,” said National
Trust Environmental Programmes Chairman and local bird
expert Patricia Bradley. “The bullfinch occurs commonly
in the Mastic Reserve and at least three Trust Reserves
between North Side and East End, along with other native
birds and a host of other animals and plants. It is also
common at the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park.”
The Trust hopes that the recognition of an
endemic bird species in the Cayman Islands will
redoubled interest of keen birders from other countries
who wish to observe Cayman’s superb biodiversity.
For more information on the Taylor’s Bullfinch
and other native species visit our website at or email
[email protected]
Wild Plants Found on Cayman Brac
Wallace Platts
Scientific name
Common name
Acrostichum aureum
Tephrosia cenerea (exists in at least 3 marsh locations on
Cayman) Brac)
To the right is the list of some plants confirmed to exist in
the wild on Cayman Brac, but not attributed to the Brac in
The Flora. A separate column shows their status in The Red
Acknowledgements: Along with the author, Doug Ross,
Doris Black, Edna Platts, Lynn Ferguson-Sage, Kathleen
Bodden-Harris, Patti Sowell, and especially Isabelle Brown,
are among those who have contributed to the field work.
Assistance in plant identification has come from the above
plus Stuart Mailer, Fred Burton, Ann Stafford, Paul Watler,
Lois Blumenthal, and the great Dr. Proctor.
This article remains the property of the author. Written
permission is required for significant extracts.
For the full report, visit Mr. Platts’ blog
Red List
Bromelia pinguin
Buxus bahamensis
Yellow nicker
Yellow nicker (caesalpinioideae)
Canavalia nitida
Botanists have catalogued most of the wild plants in the
Cayman Islands. The definitive works are Dr. George
Proctor’s Flora of the Cayman Islands, second edition, and
F.J. Burton’s Threatened Plants of the Cayman Islands: The
Red List. But a book is no sooner published than it is out of
date. Many plants that live here in the wild are credited in
the references for Grand Cayman, Little Cayman or both but
not for Cayman Brac. These plants have been here all along
but have been missed.
Ceiba pentranda
Horse bean
Silk cotton tree
Not listed
Celtis trinervia
Bastard fustic
Chamaecrista lineat
Storm weed
Comocladia dentata
Maiden plum
Cucumus anguria
Wild cucumber
Not listed
Coin seed
Dodonaea viscosa
Varnish leaf
Duranta erecta
Forget-me not
Wild calabash
Smilax havanensis
Wire wiss
Wild jasmine
Tephrosia cinerea
Tillandsia paucifolia
Tillandsia setacea
Tillandsia recurvata
Typha domingensis
Cat-tail, rush
Activity Round up
Danielle Watler, Development and Marketing Coordinator
Newly Elected 2014-15 National Trust
Council (from left): Vice Chairman Peter
Davey, Chairman Andy Gibb,
Charmaine Moss, John Bothwell, Cathy
Frazier, Darvin Ebanks, Deborah
Drummond, John Doak and Tommie
Bodden. Missing from photo: Treasurer
Peter Anderson, Secretary Sarah Bolton,
Patricia Bradley, Dr Elaine Campbell, Suzan
Merren, Alice Mae Coe and Sam Small.
Below: Guests gather at Guy Harvey’s Crudo
for the 2014 Annual General Meeting
2014 Annual General Meeting
Almost 100 members attended the Trust’s Annual
General Meeting on Thursday, 25th September making it
the best AGM held in years. For the first time ever, the
“Rusty Trusty” awards were presented in recognition of the
various quirks of Trust members, staff and council. Raffle
prizes included Trust paraphernalia and a brand new Apple
TV from Logic Cayman which was won by Rachelle Peterson.
Life Member Lori Adams was awarded the “Most
Active Member” for the 2013-14 year. Outgoing Legal
Advisor Angelyn Hernandez was also recognized for her
years of dedication to the National Trust and past Chairman
Carla Reid was honoured with a plaque to be placed in the
Mastic Reserve in recognition of her incredible
accomplishments during her 10+ years on the Trust Council.
Dr. Brian Jones of University of Alberta
presenting on the geology of the
Cayman Islands
We are please to welcome Andy Gibb as the new Chairperson
and wish Carla Reid much success in her future endeavors.
Other members elected to Council include:
Darvin Ebanks, Patricia Bradley, Seth “Tommie” Bodden, MBE,
John Bothwell, Dr. Elaine Campbell, John Doak,
Charmaine Moss, Cathy Frazier, Deborah Drummond, Suzan
Merren, Sam Small and Alice Mae Coe. The following positions
were not up for election this year as these
Council members are serving the second of a
two year term; Peter Davey as Vice Chairperson, Peter Anderson as Treasurer and Sarah
Bolton as Secretary.
National Trust Speaker’s Series
The Trust partnered with the CI Water
Authority for a geological journey with Dr.
Brian Jones in October 2014. Performing
extensive fieldwork in the islands for over 30
years, Dr. Jones explained what fossils tell us
about past environments, how rock layers
reveal ancient geography, and why we
experience earthquakes. Thank you to the
George Town Public Library for allowing us the use of their
meeting room.
In November, exotic species veterinarians Dr. Matt
Johnson and Dr. Eric Klaphake spoke about the blue iguana,
their part in conservation, what the invasion of the green
iguana means, and best practices for controlling the iguana.
St. Matthew’s University was kind enough to allow us the
use of their lecture room for this relevant and interesting
discussion. For more information on our
bi-monthly lecture series please email Karie Bounds at
[email protected] or call 749-1121.
Traditional Cooking: Jam-boree
Chef Zelmalee Ebanks took over the kitchen at A.L.
Thompson’s in September for an afternoon of mastering
the techniques of making homemade jam. Participants
were given the opportunity to enjoy an assortment of
traditional treats during the demonstration along with
refreshments made from local fruit.
3oz guava jams were sold for a price of CI$3 and all
proceeds went to the National Trust. Patrons who signed up
for Trust membership and existing members who donated
CI$10 or more were automatically entered into a raffle
drawing. Raffle winner took home a jam starter kit with all
necessary tools thank to A.L. Thompson’s.
Families in the Wild:
Snorkel Clinic and Bat Cave Exploration
Families were invited to learn how to snorkel or
improve their skills at a Trust Snorkel Clinic at Smith’s Cove
in September. Kids ages 6 and up explored the wonderful
underwater world with snorkel instruction from Emma
Nicholsby from DiveTech. The event was so popular that it
was repeated the following month along with a bat cave
exploration where participants learned about the furry
fliers of the night while walking through a bat cave with a
Trust guide.
Pirates Week Parade
The National Trust’s Heritage Heroes Youth
Conservation Club debuted their original Cayman
Superheroes at the 2014 Pirates Week Parade: Cayman
Knight, Ironwood Man, Thatch Woman and Wild Orchid
along with "Iggy" our Blue Iguana mascot! Thank you to all
our heroes in training who participated in our "Melting Pot
of Preservation" Pirates Week float. Heritage Heroes, which
is proudly sponsored by PwC , teaches students the
importance of protecting the natural environment, history
and culture of the Cayman Islands.
National Trust’s 2014 Pirate’s Week Float
Meaningful Christmas Offerings
Families and companies shared a piece of Cayman
with loved ones, clients and staff this Christmas. By
purchasing Christmas gifts from the National Trust, people
had a chance to highlight their commitment to the
preservation of our unique history and heritage. Patrons
were able to choose from a variety of gift offerings such as
the Trust’s Adopt Nature Programme, Trust Tours, Trust
Membership and other retail items including Trust collector
Christmas cards, books, stuffed animals and stylish
eco-friendly bags.
Our 2014 Christmas cards which depict peaceful
times at the newly renovated Fort George were designed by
Raidez Perez, a 19 year old student who just recently
finished her A Levels at Cayman Prep & High School. She is
currently in her gap year and is make the most of her time
by volunteering at the National Trust.
Customised “Endangered Sweeties” Chocolate Bars,
displaying an image of the endangered Grand Cayman Blue
Iguana, were also available for CI$5 and proceeds will go
directly to the Blue Iguana Recovery Programme.
In addition to these gift offerings, made-to-order
gift baskets were available at the National Trust’s retail
shop located in the Dart Park, South Church Street.
2014 Christmas Cards designed by
19 year old artist Raidez Perez
Proceeds from the Trust’s new
“Endangered Sweeties” line of
Chocolates for Conservation go
to the Blue Iguana
Recovery Programme.
Christmas at the Fort
The National Trust held its annual volunteer
appreciation evening on Thursday, December 11th at the
newly renovated Fort George. Entitled “Christmas at the
Special thanks to all our
volunteers and guests who
attended the event along
with sponsors Tortuga,
Fosters Food Fair – IGA, AI
Rentals, Port Authority, CUC
and Audio Visual Solutions.
Fort”, volunteers were recognized for their hard work and
dedication throughout 2014. Christmas carols, cocktails
and traditional Caymanian fare were enjoyed by all. Gift
items such as 2014 Christmas cards and Blue Iguana
“Endangered Sweeties” were on sale along with gift
baskets for persons to share with loved ones this season.
Steel Attitude’s Nicholas Bell and Danielle Japal
kicked off the night with an arrangement of steel pan
music. Performances from local musical artists Andy Blake,
Mikayla Corin and Jose Zambrano followed.
Ecosystems Services Report
Catherine Childs, Environmental Programmes Assistant
The National Trust’s first report investigating potential
protected areas in the Cayman Islands is now available! This
report is thanks to a Darwin Plus grant won in conjunction with
the Anguilla National Trust to promote the creation and
management of protected areas in both territories.
We looked specifically at the ecosystem services, or
benefits that people receive from nature, provided by our
natural areas in order to determine which sites provide the
most services to the human population of our
islands. Protection from storms, nurseries for fish destined for
human consumption, the health of the coral reefs that attract
our visitors, and maintenance of the quality of the few
freshwater lenses Cayman possesses are just a few of the
many services that we rely upon intact ecosystems to provide
for us. It is important that we understand the critical
ecosystem services provided by our natural areas before we
decide to allow their conversion to more roads, homes, and
shopping areas.
Many drivers of change are affecting the islands in
concert and together could cause irreparable harm to our
unique natural areas. Development should proceed with a
plan in mind, ensuring the sustainable use of our resources.
Immediate protection of the areas that provide the most
important flows of ecosystem services is critical if we are to
ensure that we are able to continue enjoying these services
into the future.
The regions analyzed in our review were found to
contribute many ecosystem services to human society on the
three islands. Although all of the sites provide important
services, the Mastic Forest, the Central Mangrove Wetland,
and Collier’s Wilderness Reserve on Grand Cayman; the Bluff
Forest on Cayman Brac; and the Crown Wetlands of Little
Cayman in particular provide many irreplaceable services to
the human populations of the Cayman Islands. These sites
have survived to the present day because of their remote
locations and difficulty of access. Those deterrents to
development have become less important and many natural
areas are now in danger of imminent and permanent
change. If our natural areas are lost, Cayman’s residents will
suffer irreparable harm as the essential ecosystem services
these sites provide are lost.
Key sites that deliver the most critical ecosystem
services should be designated protected areas immediately in
order to guarantee that their essential functions continue to
be delivered to the people of the Cayman Islands for years to
For the full report, please visit our webpage at
Volunteer profile: Raidez Perez
t’s a rare not-for-profit that doesn’t rely on
numerous dedicated volunteers to keep things
running smoothly. Here at the National Trust we
certainly can attest that a lot of the essential work
that gets done both in and outside of the office
benefits greatly from the help of volunteers who do
everything from answer the phone to trail
maintenance. In this series, we will be profiling the
people who work so tirelessly behind the scenes at
the Trust.
Pirate’s Week Heritage Heroes float. I also designed
their 2014 Christmas Card.
What you like most about volunteering?
Not only do I enjoy the projects I get to help on or
the people I get to work with, but I also love what
the National Trust stands for because I feel that they
strive to protect the very essence of Cayman through
preserving the environment and heritage of the
Cayman Islands.
Volunteer Opportunities
The Trust currently has volunteer opportunities in
the following areas:
Front Desk and Retail shop;
Fundraising and Events;
Historic site maintenance;
Historic research;
Mastic trail maintenance;
Community Outreach and Education;
Marketing Campaigns and Focus Groups; and
Name: Raidez Perez
Membership and Volunteer management.
Originally from: My family is originally from the
Philippines but I was born and raised in the Cayman
If you are interested in volunteering with the trust
please contact [email protected] or
call 749-1122.
Interests: : I have a wide range of interests. I like art
and photography, but I also like math. And I love
going to the beach and enjoying what Cayman has to
How did you find out about the National Trust?
I found out about the National Trust through a
brochure that my father gave me and then he signed
us up for a family membership.
What kinds of things do you do as a volunteer?
I do a variety of different things as a volunteer, from
the little things of just answering phone calls or
scanning documents to bigger projects like helping
out with the National Trust Summer Camp or the
Heritage Heroes is a youth
conservation club aimed
at teaching middle school
students the importance
of conserving the natural
environment and places
of historic and cultural
interest. Sponsored by
PwC, this club encourages
national pride and a sense
of identity and empowers
our young people. To
spread the message of
conservation, four
heritage heroes have
been designed based on
Caymanian national and
traditional symbols:
Cayman Knight (based
on Caymanite)
Wild Orchid (based on
endemic Wild Banana Orchid)
Thatch Woman (based on endemic Silver Thatch
Ironwood Man (based on endemic Ironwood Tree)
We are inviting school children across all the three
Cayman Islands to take part in the design of our fifth
Superhero by participating in our Design Competition.
Super Hero Design Competition
The Cayman Islands’ heritage, culture and
environment are threatened by human activity.
Without preservation, our identity and Islands
becomes more and more vulnerable over time. The
Heritage Heroes aim to protect our identity and
environment by preserving all things Cayman. Our fifth
hero should have special powers focuses on preserving
an important part of our heritage. This can include but
not limited to our built heritage, culture or
What do I need to do?
Download the
entry form from the
National Trust’s website:
and create an illustration
of a male or female
superhero that will share
the message of protecting
our natural or historic
things or places. Please
remember to include your
hero’s powers, strengths,
weaknesses and what
part of Cayman’s
cultural, history or
environment that the
hero is based on.
Who can enter?
Any school-aged child can
take part in this
competition. You may submit as many entries as you
would like.
How do I submit my entry?
You can scan and email entries to Karie Bounds,
Education Programme Coordinator:
[email protected] or deliver to the National Trust office in the South Sound Dart Park. You
will receive an email confirmation of the receipt of your
entry/entries. Don’t forget to check competition rules
before you send your entry. Please provide all details
requested on the application form.
Competition Timetable:
27th March 2015- Entries to be submitted
13th April 2015 – Winner(s) announced
Contact [email protected] for more info