Diving & Water sports
The Commonwealth of Dominica has established three Marine Reserves to preserve and protect the marine environment for all users. There is one reserve each in the Northern, Central and Southwestern coastal areas
The Dominica Marine Reserve Service has been developed with the full backing of the Fisheries Division to provide an effective management body to protect, promote and educate about the marine environment on the west of the island. The west coast is the calmer Caribbean side.
These reserves are all fisheries driven, protecting valuable nursery grounds and spawning areas, in conjunction with the growing dive tourism. At all stages of the process, local area management is implemented, thereby ensuring that all users have an equal say in the protection process.
User fees are employed as a levy to ensure maintenance of the system; from dive boat moorings maintenance to paying warden stipends.
The Dominica Marine Reserve Service oversees these areas:
The oldest and most widely known is the Soufriere Scott’s Head Marine Reserve (S.S.M.R) located in the south.
The Scott’s Head ~ Soufriere Marine Reserve (SSMR) is located on the south-western tip of the island. It encompasses the villages of Scott’s Head and Soufrière up to Anse Bateau, near the village of Pointe Michel. It is the most picturesque bay on the island, both below and above the water. The region is dominated by the Scott’s Head or Cachacrou Peninsula; separating the calmer Caribbean Sea from the wilder Atlantic Ocean. During the islands turbulent past the headland was home to a battalion of Scots Guards, who used to fire warning cannon when fleets from Martinique approached. There is still an old gun emplacement there with a commanding view across the bay to Roseau, and across the channel to Martinique
The Salisbury Marine Reserve (S.M.R) in the central area is currently awaiting legislative protection.
The Cabrits Marine Reserve (C.M.R) in the north was originally part of the Cabrits National Park, but the decision was made for it to become a reserve in its own right to ensure the specialized protection it deserves along with continued fundin