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Location Sint Maarten (to Netherlands), Sint Maarten
Central coordinates 63o 2.78' West  18o 1.85' North
IBA criteria A4i
Area 188 ha
Altitude
Year of IBA assessment 2007





Site description Great Salt Pond is the largest pond on St. Maarten/Martin and borders the capital Philipsburg. The pond is bordered on all sides by busy roads and pollution from the urban area and landfill is a major concern.

Key Biodiversity Laughing Gulls congregate at this site prior to the breeding season. The highest recorded population was 5,800 individuals. Based on BirdLife’s Caribbean Laughing Gull population estimate of 15,000 individuals, this congregation represents a significant portion of the regional population. It is not clear if this occurred historically or if the gulls now assemble to feed from the landfill. The only species confirmed to breed at this site is the Black-necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus (estimated 50 pairs).

Non-bird biodiversity: Not applicable.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Laughing Gull Larus atricilla resident  2001-2006  5,800 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   major

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
urban/industrial/transport -
Notes: The pond is bordered on all sides by busy roads and pollution from the urban area and landfill is a major concern.

Protection status Great Salt Pond is unprotected and not near a protected area.

Further web sources of information 

Site profile from Important Bird Areas in the Caribbean: key sites for conservation (BirdLife International 2008)

References A.C. BROWN and N. COLLIER unpublished data 2001-2006.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Great Salt Pond, Sint Maarten. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 30/08/2015

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife