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Intensified Hunting Efforts Yield Positive Results for Saba's Ecosystem

SABA - The combined and dedicated efforts, of the Public Entity Saba and designated hunters, the island's free-roaming goat population is beginning to show tangible results. We are pleased to report that in the past three months on average over 230 goats per month have been successfully culled, signifying a significant improvement in the management of this invasive species and the reduction of erosion on the island.


One of the most encouraging outcomes of these intensified hunting efforts is the recovery observed in our island's vegetation. The past months have witnessed a notable resurgence in our natural landscape, thanks to the reduction in the number of goats on the island. Initiatives such as tree outplanting and backyard farming are experiencing less disruption from wandering livestock, allowing the island's flora to thrive once again.


As the number of free-roaming goats declines, the Public Entity is preparing to enter the next phase of this vital project. In September, the Public Entity hosted two invasive species experts who conducted an exploratory visit to our island. Their findings will serve as the foundation for their recommendations concerning the approach for the next phase and the development of a comprehensive implementation plan.


We want to reconfirm that intensified hunting efforts will persist to further diminish the population of free-roaming goats. Several reasons underscore the necessity of this ongoing effort. First, there have been reports of increasing goat populations in certain areas of the island, necessitating our continued vigilance. Additionally, although progress has been made during the bounty period, indications suggest that remaining goats are reproducing at a rapid rate.


To address these concerns and continue safeguarding our unique ecosystem, four areas were designated for intensified hunting in July: Well’s Bay and the vicinity of Troy Hill, Crispeen, Tara Ground, the Bottom Mountain, and the area across to Troy Hill, Johnny’s Ground, Banana Gut to Over the Peak, and the Sulphur Mine area. These efforts have proven successful in reducing goat populations in these zones, prompting us to designate additional areas for intensified hunting.


Effective from December 1st, 2023, the following areas will be added to the list of intensified hunting zones:


The Ladder Bay area

The Fort Bay, Fort Bay Road, and Landfill area

The areas of Spring Bay and Kelby’s Ridge


Please be aware that at least one week prior to your hunting activities, it is required that you contact Sarah Van der Horn from Public Entity to arrange approval of hunting in the above areas. This precaution is to ensure your safety as well as the safety of the designated hunters. You can contact Sarah Van der Horn at sarah.vanderhorn@sabagov.nl.


We appreciate the community's patience and cooperation during this time, and together, we are actively working to protect and rejuvenate Saba's natural environment and biodiversity.

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