Palm Islands Nature Reserve
- Lebanon -
Palm Islands Nature Reserve was designated as a Wetland of International Importance (Ramsar Site) under the Ramsar Convention on 03 August 2001.
Formed from three islets in a healthy environment and water and is a stopover for about 170 bird species, a breeding site for the Logger-head Turtle and the Mediterranean Monk Seal, a spawning site for many fish species, and a rich area in medicinal and highly appreciated culinary plants.
Monachus monachus (breeding), Caretta caretta (breeding), Chelonia mydas (wintering and foraging), Puffinus yelkouan (wintering), and many near-threatened species.
Uninhabited peaceful islands with clean and healthy water and natural resources making an excellent area for recreation with trails and bird watching tower, and swimming areas with sandy beaches of shell fragments.
Presence of a church, well and bathing basins from the crusaders’ time and historical mounting of cannons from the Second World War.
Environmental guides, toilets with treatment of waste, shelter (umbrellas, benches, tables, huts), garbage collection bins for recycling, trails, birdwatching tower.
Recreation/education, tourism, environmentally friendly sportive events, research.
Conservation is mainly based on keeping people on trails, awareness sessions and materials, students’ visits for appreciation of biodiversity values, a plan to face oil spills if any, protection of the site during breeding and flowering seasons.
Corruption, lack of funding, illegal access of visitors, weak cooperation with promenade boat owners.
The site has an old management plan that was endorsed by the Ministry of Environment in 2000 and was valid until 2005. It needs updates but there are no funds for this. Currently, the site is relying on the yearly action plans and the management objectives.
Latest updates of these informations: Mars 2020