RI 10 CUBA
At sunset in Siboney-Juticí Ecological Reserve, the largest colony of bats in Cuba, emerge in search of food. The coastal strip between Santiago de Cuba Bay and the community of Siboney has a priceless mix ideal for the conservation of the Cuban biota. Here an amazing world of marine terraces, carved into the rock by the waves, seem to rise from the sea like a stairway for giants.
Superficial limestone formations have created a landscape full of sharp-pointed rocks and cavities, where soil is restricted to a few places, and positioned south of the mountains blocking humidity creates and extremely dry environment. Water scarcity have created flora adaptations and below the ground an extensive cave system has allowed perfect niches for fauna diversity.
Nonetheless, the Reserve, and the ecological processes are not invulnerable to outside pressures and, clandestine resource extraction could re-emerge, in the marine as well as in the terrestrial zone. A comprehensive management plan for Siboney-Juticí would provide strategies sustainable activities and the protection of areas outside the Reserve where its bats forage. We aimed to fill some information gaps on the biological diversity and the social assets of the area inhabitants.
Photo by Nicasio Viña Dávila