Location: Soufriere, St Lucia
It was day 2 in Soufriere, and people were taking it easy. After eating breakfast, we all dinghied into town to listen to a presentation by the SMMA (Soufriere Marine Management Association.) They described to us their duties as rangers and how they protect the marine ecology. They told us that the local coral reefs have declined by as much as 1/3 in recent years, mostly due to human involvement, such as improper anchoring, fishing, and litter. For this reason, the SMMA created a series of zones that were designated for fishing, anchoring, recreational or other activities. With the creation of this system, the SMMA is reporting an increase in coral and reef fish health and fishing success. After we finished the presentation, we returned to the boat for sandwiches and free time. Some opted to stay, and some spent some time in town. Those who hung around did some snorkeling around the nearby reef. In town, we did some shopping and took in the sites.