fernando

Fernando Simal

General Coordinator

Temporary Administration Coordinator

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Fernando is the Manager of the Natural and Historic Resources Unit of STINAPA Bonaire, an NGO that has the mandate from the Government of the Island of Bonaire to manage the national parks of the island. He has worked for this institution since the year 2000. After 9 years as Manager of the terrestrial park, since 2010 he is responsible for all the research and monitoring of flora and fauna that takes place in the national parks of Bonaire. Currently, he is engaged in studying the population dynamics of the Long-nosed bat (Leptonycteris curasoae) in the ABC islands, the cave use dynamics of bat populations in the three islands and a cave-mapping project that aims to include all caves found in the ABC’s. Fernando aims to substantiate the legal implementation of “Cave System Nature Reserves’’ in the ABC Islands with the knowledge acquired by the three projects.


odette

Odette Doest

Conservation Coordinator

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Odette is a Veterinary Doctor based in Curacao, her place of birth. Besides the vast amount of work at her clinic with domestic animals, she also has a great amount of experience treating wild fauna. She participated in the Bats and Caves Workshop held in Curacao during May 2011 and has been very active on bat research and conservation ever since. On her own initiative, Odette has added a whole new field to bat research in the ABC’s by initiating studies into different aspects of bat physiology and zoonosis in cooperation with Universities in Holland, her place of graduation. Parallel to her veterinarian skills, Odette has a heart for the conservation and protection of all kinds of wildlife and their habitats and she plans to use the PCMABC as a platform from where she can contribute significant work on this field, including management actions and legislation.


linda

Linda Garcia

Scientific Research Coordinator

Temporary Aruba Island Coordinator

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Linda lived and studied in Cape Town, South Africa, and worked for 9 years in Marine Research in her country. In 2010 she arrived in Aruba, unexpectedly, but decided to stay and seek new opportunities.  Currently working as a SCUBA Dive Instructor in Aruba, she participated in the Bat & Caves Workshop held on the island of Aruba in 2012, and has been hooked ever since.  Linda is the Field Scientific Advisor for the bat mist netting  sessions conducted by FPN Arikok. She has also being responsible for all the data collection for the Phenology of Cacti & Agave Project in FPN Arikok in Aruba. Through her involvement in bat conservation, Linda has become more and more aware of the increasing need to find out more about how the bats are utilizing the islands, how tourism and many other factors could be impacting them and their survival, and to find the best possible solutions to ensure their continued survival and growth in the Caribbean.  Linda hopes to continue on a path which takes her back to scientific research fulltime, putting her valuable education and experience to good use. She is honored and delighted to have been selected as Scientific Coordinator of the PCMABC.


desiree

Desiree Croes

Education Coordinator

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Desiree is working for STINAPA Bonaire for over 4 years as Nature & Environment Education Coordinator. She wants to teach children the value of nature for their own future survival on Bonaire and in the whole world. During this period she developed bat education activities for elementary schools on Bonaire. She also started the bat presentations for the general public combined with a live activity at the caves guided by scientists to bring the public closer to bat research and monitoring activities. Desiree has been exceptionally successful with the Junior Ranger Program, bringing many positive changes into  the life of many children and teenagers of Bonaire, including the love and appreciation for nature and a healthy environment. Her motivation to join the PCMABC is to teach the future generation about bats as key species of terrestrial ecosystems as they have not received the attention and credit they deserve as major insect-controllers and pollinators in ecosystems worldwide. As the Education Coordinator of the PCMABC she has the opportunity to help this utterly unique and misunderstood mammal.


karen

Karen Winona van Dijk

Communications Coordinator

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Karen has worked for six years as the Communications Coordinator of STINAPA Bonaire, before accepting a new challenge two years ago. During her time at STINAPA Bonaire, she developed a keen interest in the bat research being undertaken by her colleagues. She became motivated to contribute to the preservation of Bonaire's bat populations, when she learned about the many benefits that the bat ecological interactions bring to the people and nature of the island. She was surprised by how few people are aware of this. She was therefore delighted to accept the invitation to serve as the Communications Coordinator for the PCMABC.


clifford

Clifford de Lannoy

Curacao Island Coordinator

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Clifford works in the Environmental Consultancy Department of CARMABI (Caribbean Research and Management of Biodiversity) Foundation, a NGO that focuses on nature education and research, and management of the national parks (Christoffel Park and Shete Boka) on Curaçao. He has a master degree in Ecology and Natural Resources Management and works for CARMABI since February 2012. He has been introduced into bat research and conservation by Fernando Simal and has joined via CARMABI the ABC’s Bat Conservation Program since May 2012, during which he gained significant knowledge and experience in both the content as the coordination of bat research and conservation efforts. The final goal is to assure long term and structural bat conservation on Curaçao and the ABC region by means of scientific research, through optimization of environmental policy and nature management strategies and communal support (through education & awareness building).


paulo

Paulo Bertuol

Bonaire Island Coordinator

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Paulo is the Wildlife Biologist of the Natural and Historic Resources Unit of STINAPA Bonaire. After doing some consultancy projects for this organization, he works now as a full time employee and he is involved in marine and terrestrial research. Previously, he worked on the dive industry in the South of Brazil, where he owned a SCUBA dive operation. For the last 2 years he has been conducting bat research on Bonaire and has participated in the cave mapping project. Together with Desiree Croes, Environmental Education Coordinator of STINAPA Bonaire and our PCMABC, he has been involved in environmental education activities in order to show people the great importance of bats and their conservation.