Saba Bank National Park

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(Guidelines and Criteria Section B / Cultural and Socio-Economic Criteria) Nominated Areas must conform, where applicable, to at least one of the three Cultural and Socio-Economic Criteria. If applicable, describe how the nominated site satisfies one or more of the following three Criteria (Attach in Annex any specific and relevant documents in support of these criteria).


The Saba Bank is and has traditionally been an important fishery resource for the island of Saba, first documented early in the twnetieth century by Boeke (1907).There are two main types of fisheries. The lobster fisheries is relatively stable in terms of total landings, economic value and fishing methods (Toller and Lundvall 2008) with an annual catch of around 85 metric tonnes (mt) and a value of USD 1.3 million

The fish trap fishery targets deepwater snapper species, in particular silk snapper, blackfin snapper, and vermilion snapper. These three lutjanid species comprise > 91 % of fish trap catch. Average catch rate of redfish in fish traps is 10 pounds per trap-haul, and 291 pounds per trip. Projected annual fish trap landings of redfish are 90,800 pounds (41.3 mt) with an ex-vessel value of US $289,000 per year (Toller and Lundvall 2008).

The Saba Bank National Park aims to regulate these fisheries to ensure their sustainability.




Cultural and traditional use:

The Saba Bank has a high traditional value for Sabans. Historically the population of the island has always been dependent on fishery on the Saba Bank for its survival and fishermen have been fishing the Bank for centuries, rowing out in small boats many miles from land in open sea

Socio-economic benefits:

Saba Bank is an important economic resource for Saba with the fisheries on the Bank contributing about 8 % to the economy of the island and providing full time employment to 20 people and part time employment for an additional 30 people (Dilrosun, 2000). On a total population of about 1600 people this is substantial. Fishing has always been one of the main means of existence for the Saban population; the
fish were consumed locally, and exported to the surrounding islands. (Dilrosun, 2000)