You can help BTT restore the mangrove habitats that support the Northern Bahamas’ flats fishery by donating to the Bahamas Mangroves Restoration Project TODAY.
In September 2019, Category 5 Hurricane Dorian tore through the Northern Bahamas, leveling the islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco. The worst natural disaster in the nation’s history, Dorian had a devastating impact on the islands’ red mangrove forests, which serve as a buffer against storms, prevent coastal erosion, and provide important habitat for bonefish and many other species. Bonefish have drawn anglers to the northern Bahamas since the 1950s and are protected under catch-and-release regulations due to their economic significance; bonefishing generates $169 million annually for the Bahamian economy.
To ensure that the flats fishery fully recovers from the damage inflicted by Dorian, BTT has partnered with Bahamas National Trust (BNT), Friends of the Environment (based in Abaco), and MANG Gear to replant 100,000 mangroves in the hardest hit areas. This large-scale, multi-year project, the first of its kind in the country, is targeting Abaco, Grand Bahama and surrounding cays. Additionally, BTT is a founding member of the Bahamas Mangrove Alliance (BMA), established in partnership with the Perry Institute for Marine Science and Waterkeepers Bahamas. Together, we have pledged to plant 1 million mangroves by the end of 2025 and to work nationally on mangrove conservation initiatives across The Bahamas.
The mangroves are planted with the help of students, volunteers, and Bahamian fishing guides, whose livelihoods are supported by the flats fishery. This unprecedented project will help nature heal while also providing a means for the fishing community to get back on its feet. Multiple mangroves nurseries have been established on Grand Bahama and Abaco, and to date more than 60,000 trees have been planted.