Blue Iguana to Blue Vervain
Work P1: Knowledge of the human-environment interplay on the UKOTs
This WP explores and shares the hidden stories of plants and animals in UK museum collections. It encourages participation in nature-based activities on Montserrat and the Cayman Islands through bioblitzes (events to find and identify as many species as possible in a specific area over a short period of time) and promotion of biological recording applications.
WP1.1: Chronicle of the human drivers of environmental change; open access peer-reviewed publication
A chronicle of the human drivers of environmental change through colonialism from historical evidence across the UKOTs will be published. A semi-systematic literature review is being conducted using peer-reviewed and grey literature, historical letters and tomes, will demonstrate what colonial impacts are visible in relation to the current environmental challenges on the UKOTs. This task will inform the Case Studies and will be published via an open access online platform (e.g. Zenodo).
WP1.2: Compilation of “hidden records” and “hidden recorders” for species on Montserrat and Cayman from open access sources
This work looks at the history of biological recording by different groups on the islands and how this was shaped by different drivers through time. Information on the “hidden records” and “hidden recorders” for species on Montserrat and Cayman from open access sources will be complied (e.g. iNaturalist and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility).
WP1.3: Case Study of local stories for Montserrat
Tradition in using medicinal plants in Montserrat originate from shared histories between the Amerindians and enslaved peoples and has been passed down through generations. Plants were a lifeline for Montserratians to cope with the violence of plantation life and colonialism. This part of the project ensures that this knowledge is preserved and passed on.
WP1.3: Case Study of local stories for the Cayman Islands
The endemic Grand Cayman blue iguana Cyclura lewisi and the Cayman Brac and Little Cayman rock iguana Cyclura nubila caymanensis are negatively impacted by invasive species. Perceptions of Caymanians to these invasive species and their understanding of the role these species have on the Cayman Islands today will be documented. The association with extinctions and spread of disease and suggest mechanisms for reducing future negative impacts will also be explored. A public engagement campaign is being delivered to provide resources on how residents can help protect the islands’ rare endemics.