Saba Bank National Park

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a - Legal and policy framework (attach in Annex a copy of original texts, and indicate, if possible, the IUCN status)

National status of your protected area:

Saba Bank is legally protected through a Ministerial Decree based on the National Act Nature Conservation Framework BES (Bonaire St. Eustatius and Saba).

A Saba Bank Management Plan was prepared in 2007. Full implementation of this plan started in 2012 with the formation of a Saba Bank Management Unit by the Saba Conservation Foundation

IUCN status (please tick the appropriate column if you know the IUCN category of your PA):

National Park for the protection of ecosystems, but also for the sustainable management of the fisheries in the area (category VI)

b - Management structure, authority

Management falls under the responsiblity of the Minstry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation (EL&I) and has been mandated by the Ministry to the Saba Conservation Foundation (SCF), which has formed the Saba Bank Management Unit for this task

c - Functional management body (with the authority and means to implement the framework)

Description of the management authority

The Saba Bank Management Unit (SBMU) is a separate unit within the Saba National Marine Park, with daily management by the Saba Conservation Foundation. A steering group consisting of SCF manager, EL&I and the island government is responsible for the overall management and planning. The unit will also report to the steering committee and the EEZ committee. The steering group will convene at least twice a year to evaluate and direct the program. Every two years the program will be evaluated externally. Activities outside of the program are at the discretion of the Saba Marine Park manager on advice by the steering group.

The Tasks of the SBMU are:

  1. Surveillance of Saba Bank at least 3 times weekly (circumstances permitting at the discretion of the SCF manager)
  2. Locate and remove lost traps (ghost traps)
  3. Liaise, consult with fishermen in regular meetings and engage them in the management
  4. Monitoring of fish landings
  5. Reporting on violations of the fishery regulations to the proper authorities (INCL. coastguard, police, public prosecutor)
  6. Establishment and maintenance of database, administration and monthly reporting to steering committee on activities.
  7. Boat and equipment maintenance
  8. Monitoring of relevant parameters (e.g. marine habitats, marine traffic, fishing efforts etc.), in accordance with the Monitoring Plan for CN.
  9. Establish and carry out public awareness and sensitization programs on better use of the natural resources of the Saba Bank.
  10. Assist in the logistics of approved scientific research projects on the Saba Ban
  11. Report twice a year to the steering committee and the EEZ Commission






Means to implement the framework

The SBMU will consist of a minimum of two staff members, one ranger and one program officer. The Unit will be housed in the Saba Marine Park offices and will be supported by teh Sab a Marine Park staff. Resources for the Unit include a patrol boat dedicated to the Saba Bank, dive equipment, and an ROV.

Scientific support from the Institute of Marine Research and Ecosystem Services (IMARES) wil be provided to the SBMU for coral reef, marine mammal and fisheries monitoring






d - Objectives (clarify whether prioritized or of equal importance)

Objective Top priority Comment
Protect and maintain the biological diversity and other natural values of the area for long term use Yes
Promote sound fisheries management practices for sustainable purposes No
Avoid conflicts between different users (e.g. shipping, fisheries) No
Protect the natural resource base from being altered by anchorage of shipping vessels or traffic that would be detrimental to the area’s biological diversity No

e - Brief description of management plan (attach in Annex a copy of the plan)

The first Management Plan for the Saba Bank (SBMP) recognizes the value and uniqueness of the Bank and the need for a strategic document to guide management decision making and to define the mission, goals and objectives of the Saba Bank Management Unit.

The SBMP was prepared in close consultation with a considerable number of stakeholders and stakeholder group representatives on Saba.

The SBMP specifies management goals and strategies for the Saba Bank Management Unit related to the Mission:To conserve and manage the natural and economic resources within the Saba Bank National Park, allowing their sustainable use for the benefit of current and future generations. It also identifies the major existing and potential threats and issues facing the Bank from ecological, social and cultural perspectives and includes substantial input from stakeholders. It is designed to be an adaptive management tool.

The SBMP fits within the broader context of the "Management Plan for the natural resources of the EEZ for the Dutch Caribbean" (EEZ Management Plan) which outlines the purposes and manner in which the Caribbean Exclusive Economic Zone and Saba Bank in particular may be used in a sustainable manner, based on a shared vision and common set of goals. It outlines the management objectives, as well as key policies, and strategies with which to achieve sustainable management. It also addresses the administrative structure, resource use, financial support, key information needs, and action points most urgently required to set sustainable management in place.

Management plan - date of publication

: 8/26/08

Management plan duration

: 5

Date of Review planned

: 2/15/13