September 21, 2021

Meeting announced to update Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD) on coral reefs in the Cayman Islands

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Screenshot Feb Meeting

 Dive & Watersports Operators of the Cayman Islands have been given notice of a meeting with them this coming Wednesday, 26th May, from 6.30 – 8.30 pm at the Government Administration Building in Room 1038 to discuss Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD) on coral reefs in the Cayman Islands.

On 26th February 2021, an urgent meeting was organized to inform stakeholders about the disease status and to update the community on DoE’s response to the threat. Highlights included the unfortunate SCTLD breach of the coral firebreak, how SCTLD will affect our reefs based on the preliminary results of DoE’s repeated measures monitoring and the use of Amoxicillin as the most effective treatment option available to mitigate SCTLD. DoE further advised that dive sites no longer had to be avoided, providing that the following procedures and protocols are followed:

1.       All diving or snorkeling on the same day should be done in the same geographical location

2.       Avoid monitoring and control sites: Penny’s Arch and Max’s Garden

3.       Disinfect dive gear

4.       Disinfect bilge water
The DoE is deeply concerned that SCTLD may be spreading via divers and boaters due to the non-linear pattern observed jumping to dive sites miles away to the Eastern end of Grand Cayman. This follow-up advisory meeting has been organised to update the community on the spread of SCTLD and to highlight the importance of disinfecting to avoid human spread of the disease. Please email [email protected]<mailto:[email protected]> with 1) your name and 2) the company you represent, to register your space by 5 pm on Tuesday 25th May. Unfortunately, this meeting will not be available via Zoom.

A recording of the February meeting can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tq14ka1Jaf0&t=15s.
More information about SCTLD, including recordings of previous meetings and disinfection protocols, are available on the DoE website: http://doe.ky/marine/SCTLD/.

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