Animals In St. Kitts Forced To Move For Tourism Development
Photo By Erasmus Williams
Basseterre, Saint Kitts – Nevis
April 28, 2008 (CUOPM)
Some four and half thousand goats and cattle are to be relocated from the South East Peninsula to enable the start of the multi-billion dollar Christophe Harbour Development ““ two hotels carrying the Mandarin Oriental and Auberge brands, mega yacht marina, restaurants, spas, club houses and golf course.
St. Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas said some 100 acres of land have been provided in the West Farm and Con Phipps areas for the livestock.
He said there are currently about 4,000 goats and sheep and 400 cattle on the South East Peninsula and based on the economic shift by the Federation of St. Christopher and Nevis to luxury tourism, there is a need to remove all of these animals as soon as possible to improve the condition of the land and to provide better management of the animals.
Dr. Douglas said that the government is working closely with the owner of the livestock and the developers of the South East Peninsula to allow the programme of development to move forward.
According to a 34-page Animal Resettlement Plan prepared for the St. Kitts Foundation by Mr. Ellis Hazel, the number of grazing animals has long exceeded the carrying capacity of the land and indiscriminate and uncontrolled grazing of livestock has led to increased land and soil degradation.
“The situation is so severe that cattle and goats migrate to higher slopes in search of grass resulting in de-vegetation from foraging and trampling of the higher slopes has resulted in erosion and other forma of slope instability,” said the report.
It outlines the steps that should be taken to capture and transportation of the animals to minimise stress and avoid injuries.