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Location Anguilla (to UK)
Central coordinates 63o 5.14' West  18o 12.07' North
IBA criteria A2, B4i
Area 43 ha
Year of IBA assessment 2013

Site description 

This large near-circular pond is the most recognizable wetland on Anguilla lying immediately to the west of the settlement, a popular beach among both local residents and visitors and port of Sandy Ground.  Best viewed from the southern ridge of Sandy Ground (South Hill), the settlement and pond together comprise perhaps the most iconic landscape on mainland Anguilla. 

The pond is bordered to the west by a dune system, now largely flattened and built upon.  To the north, east and south, some of the highest hills on Anguilla curve around the pond which forms a valley bottom at their base.  The hills are clothed in low dry forest scrub with scattered trees and create the predominant water catchment area of the pond. 

Over the years substantial infilling of the pond has taken place. Indeed – and most recently (1996-1997) - the pond’s southern catchment was filled to accommodate the raising and widening of the road as well as on the northern corner to upgrade a small track into a paved road. In 2005, the pond south-western corner of the pond was infilled to create parking space for shipment trailers. The pond is now closely bordered by a ring road although on the eastern side; this is set back behind fringing vegetation, a truck park and a sports field.  In addition to the settlement directly within Sandy Ground, significant residential housing and villas line the North and South Hill slopes and ridges. 

Dating back to the settlement period of the Amerindians, Road Pond has been used as a source of salt. Saltworks infrastructure in the form of rock walls and dams within the pond still line its inner perimeter. Artefacts and images preserving, celebrating and recognising this place of Anguillian history and heritage can be found at a bar and restaurant that used to be the Salt Factory Pumphouse. 

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Least Tern Sternula antillarum breeding  2010  max 123 individuals  good  B4i  Least Concern 
Caribbean Elaenia Elaenia martinica resident  2013  1 individuals  medium  A2  Least Concern 
Pearly-eyed Thrasher Margarops fuscatus resident  2013  1 individuals  medium  A2  Least Concern 
Lesser Antillean Bullfinch Loxigilla noctis resident  2013  1 individuals  medium  A2  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland) Fens, transition mires & springs; Freshwater lakes & pools  major
Forest Mangrove  minor
Coastline Sand dunes & beaches  major

Land ownership Private/State

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research major
Notes: Bird Monitoring
tourism/recreation major
urban/industrial/transport minor
other major
Notes: Cultural Heritage Site
water management minor
Notes: Culvert and channel to the sea

Protection status None

Access/Land-Owner requests None 

Acknowledgements Author: Clarissa Lloyd, Anguilla National Trust

Edited by: Farah Mukhida, Anguilla National Trust


Anguilla National Trust. ANT wetland bird count data (2007 – 2011). Unpublished.

Daniels, Edsel B. 2011. Anguilla Wetlands Mapping Project Report: A component of the UK DFID/OTEP funded “Building a Foundation for Anguilla’s Wetland Future” Project. Unpublished Report.

Holliday, S.H.; Hodge, K.V.D.; Hughes, D.E. 2007.  A guide to the birds of Anguilla.  Bedfordshire, England; Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

Lloyd C. and Mukhida, F. 2012. The state of Anguilla’s wetland birds 2007-2011. The Valley, Anguilla: Anguilla National Trust.

Raffaele, H.; Wiley, J.;Garrido, O.; Keith, A. ; Raffaele, J. (2003) Birds of the West Indies. New Jersey, USA: Princeton University Press.

Subin, E, Dudley, J, Crock, J, Bryan, JAS, Thomas, R, Christian, I, Vanterpool, V & Warner, B (1998) A Field Guide to Anguilla’s Wetlands. Anguilla National Trust, The Valley, Anguilla

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Road Salt Pond. Downloaded from on 19/09/2014

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