June 5, 2015

1630 NETHERLANDS (Netherlands / Bonaire) - Bonaire Marine Park (UNESCO WHS - Tentative List)

1630 Bonaire - Aerial view of Cai (Lac Bay),
and its fishing village

Bonaire Marine Park comprises the waters around Bonaire and Klein Bonaire (the largest uninhabited island in the Caribbean) to a depth of 60 metres from the high water mark. The Park consists of 2,700 hectares of coral reef, seagrass beds and mangroves, and is the habitat of over 50 varieties of stony coral and over 350 species of reef fish. Its coral reefs are the least degraded in the entire Caribbean Sea. Sea turtles nest on the beaches of Bonaire and Klein Bonaire and feed in Lac Bay, which is partly closed off from the sea by a coral reef. Surrounded by mangroves, the bay contains seagrass meadows, and is home to the Green Turtle, the Queen Conch and the Mangrove Tree all of which are globally recognised as Endangered Species.

Actually the Lac is the biggest lagoon of the Netherlands Antilles, 700 hectares (3.9km from north to south, 3km from east to west), and has two peninsulas: Cai and Sorobon. For generations Lac has been a fishing ground for local fishermen. Over-fishing has not occurred since the traditional fishing method of hand lines with hooks is used. Besides fishing, these days the fishermen who live at Cai also sell refreshments. On weekends local music groups play live music and freshly caught fried fish is sold. Through the mangrove forest the water is so clear, that can be seen reef fish, sea stars, sponges and an occasional turtle.

About the stamp
The stamp is part of a series of birds issued on January 1, 2014.

Bonaire Marine Park - UNESCO official website
Lac - Bonaire National Marine Park official website

Sender: Adriaan
Sent from Kralendijk (Netherlands / Bonaire), on 09.05.2015
Photo: Dos Winkel

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