The Forestry Department in the Ministry of Agriculture is appealing to people to be mindful as to how they use the nation’s forested areas for recreational purposes.
This appeal was made by Senior Forestry Supervisor, Cornelius Richards, who said they want to have some level of control brought to this development.
Mr. Richards said while hiking and other recreational uses of the forest continue to increase, they are concerned about the impact these unregulated activities are having on the nation’s ecosystem and how it is affecting animals which are endemic to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
Richards said while they welcome the greater use of the nation’s forested areas, they want to ensure that no activities take place in the areas which are designated forest reserves.
He said this is important because these areas are home to a number of endemic species which are critical to the nation’s ecosystem.
Mr. Richards said that his department is also concerned about the movement of pests and diseases into the forested areas.
He said they are currently seeing the endemic Frog of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines being affected by one of these diseases.
Mr. Richards said they are afraid that if recreational activities continue unregulated in the forests, this can have major negative impacts on the environment.
He said this can affect the food chain, water quality, upper water shed areas and even the quality of life that Vincentians now enjoy.
SOURCE: NBC Radio