UPDATE: All rules put in place have been extended until September 30, 2023. At that point, STINAPA will reevaluate the situation.
Protecting our reef.
Bonaire is known for its pristine reefs and lively underwater world. Therefore, it is our duty to protect it at all costs. Most of the southern Caribbean islands have been dealing with a very fast-spreading coral ailment for years (SCTLD). Recently, it was detected on Bonaire.
In the past few weeks, STINAPA has been working hard on various issues, including the Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD) that is affecting areas of our reef. An advisory consisting of OLB, TCB, and STINAPA has been formed. The advisory group is actively working together to mitigate the current situation in the best interest of Bonaire.
Upcoming changes to Klein Bonaire.
The advisory group has made the decision to adjust the opening hours of Klein Bonaire. Beginning Monday, May 22nd, Klein Bonaire will only be open from 7 Am – 2 PM Monday through Saturday. On Sundays, it will remain open from 7 AM – 7PM, but as an add-on, it will now be allowed to dive and snorkel from 7 AM – 2 PM. After 2 PM on Sundays, people can visit and swim only (diving and snorkeling not allowed after 2 PM). Additionally, all moorings around Klein Bonaire will only be available during those hours. The changes apply to everyone and are in effect until September 30, 2023. At that point, STINAPA will reevaluate the situation.
While SCTLD is affecting certain areas of our reef, Bonaire still has many beautiful, healthy areas and coral. The northernmost dive sites remain closed until further notice but many other sites are open. Just remember to follow the decontamination rules and regulations.
STINAPA will continue to monitor the reefs and evaluate the adapted hours in one month. These measures are implemented to reduce pressure on the reef and enhance its resilience. By limiting access during specific hours, we can better manage the impact on the fragile ecosystem.
Your help is vital to slow the spread of SCTLD. We urge all Marine Park users to follow the guidelines and exercise caution to protect our marine ecosystem.