After 4 years of going up and down to the Caribbean for many different projects, 2017 brought me to one of the tiniest islands in the area: Saba, Dutch Caribbean. After graduating at Van Hall Larenstein and have worked as a project officer of artificial reefs, I decided to take the job at the Saba Conservation Foundation by being part of the Saba Bank Management Unit.
The Saba Bank is the largest submerged atoll in the Atlantic Ocean which covers an area of 2200 km2. This makes the Saba Bank larger than the Dutch Wadden Sea and the third largest of its kind in the world. The Saba Bank has one of the richest diversity of marine life of the Caribbean Sea, and contributes to the diversity of marine life of surrounding islands like Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Maarten. This large area provides different habitats, with rich coral reefs along the edge, large soft coral forests, and algal fields and sand plains in its midst. With such a large diversity of habitats and species, the Saba Bank supports two of the main incomes of Saba, the fisheries and dive industry. Recently, in 2015 the Saba Bank has been designated as the first Yarari Marine Mammal and Shark Sanctuary of the kingdom of The Netherlands. The Saba Bank Management Unit (SBMU) was set up in 2012 to manage these nature values for sustainable use by current and future generation. My job is to manage the team, support all research, data monitoring and collection, liaise with fishermen and the coast guard, coordinate students and much more.
I really look forward to many adventures and experiences that I will have here on Saba, and I am very happy to have Guido here at the moment supporting me. It is very nice to have spend some time together and even experience great things as a couple during work.