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Fort Christiansvaern

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Fort Christiansvaern

Constructed in the late 1700s of yellow brick, Fort Christiansvaern is the best preserved of the five Danish forts remaining in the West Indies. The fort is a wonderful example of Danish colonial military architecture. Although built for defense against pirate and privateers as well as to ward off slave uprising, its cannons have never known warfare. The fort is built around a small courtyard and includes corner bastions and small dark dungeons. Originally used by the Danish Army the fort later served as a jail and also for religious services.

Update Feb. 12th 2018: National Park Service will increase the entrance fee for Christiansted NHS at Fort Christiansvaern from $3 to $7 per person. Entrance fees are not charged to children under 16 years of age. Owners of valid Federal passes such as the Senior Pass, Access Pass, and the America the Beautiful Annual Passes, NPS Volunteers, and Military are admitted free of charge under the established guidelines for those passes. These passes will continue to be available and honored at the park. Entrance fees receipts will grant access to this location for three days.

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Variability of blue carbon storage in seagrass habitats in the U.S. Virgin Islands

CHRISTIANSTED –
The National Park Service will be partnering with the University of the Virgin Islands to conduct seagrass surveys at Buck Island Reef National Monument on Thursday, August 2nd. Researchers will be snorkeling and diving in the seagrass beds to the west and south of West Beach. Please be aware of the researchers and maintain a safe distance from them while they are in the water. Dive flags will indicate their location. These surveys will be part of a larger effort to understand the capacity of seagrasses to sequester and retain carbon that might otherwise rise up and trap heat in the atmosphere. Increases in atmospheric temperature can compound existing environmental stresses and lead to, for example, stronger hurricanes.

In the context of the global carbon cycle, “blue carbon” habitats like seagrass meadows, are substantial carbon sinks and provide a key ecosystem service by sequestering and storing significant amounts of carbon, particularly belowground in plant roots and rhizomes. Recent work shows that within these habitats, sediment carbon concentrations vary spatially, with depth below the ground surface, and with time since establishment and that this variation can be explained by species- specific differences in vegetation and geomorphic context. These relationships are not well understood for seagrass species common to the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). Previous work on St. Thomas, USVI explored carbon storage in two native seagrass species (Thalassia testudinum and Syringodium filiforme), the invasive seagrass (Halophila stipulacea) and un-vegetated sand. Results suggest that H. stipulacea may be storing carbon in a comparable amount to native seagrass species.

Collecting additional sediment cores around Buck Island seeks to answer the question of carbon storage in seagrass habitats with time since establishment- another key variable that may play a role in predicting carbon storage in these habitats. Halophila stipulacea was fist documented in St. John in 2012, then in St. Thomas in 2013, and finally St. Croix in 2016. The invasion history of H. stipulacea across the USVI sets up a natural experimental design and allows for researchers to gain a better understanding of seagrass habitats as blue carbon ecosystems.

If you would like additional information about this study, please contact: Clayton Pollock, NPS Biologist Ph 340-773-1460 x 238; clayton_pollock@nps.gov

The National Park Service thanks all of our community members and friends for 52 years of support for Buck Island Reef NM and we look forward to an exciting year of events celebrating our unique resource.
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Variability of blue carbon storage in seagrass habitats in the U.S. Virgin IslandsCHRISTIANSTED –
The National Park Service will be partnering with the University of the Virgin Islands to conduct seagrass surveys at Buck Island Reef National Monument on Thursday, August 2nd. Researchers will be snorkeling and diving in the seagrass beds to the west and south of West Beach. Please be aware of the researchers and maintain a safe distance from them while they are in the water. Dive flags will indicate their location. These surveys will be part of a larger effort to understand the capacity of seagrasses to sequester and retain carbon that might otherwise rise up and trap heat in the atmosphere. Increases in atmospheric temperature can compound existing environmental stresses and lead to, for example, stronger hurricanes.
In the context of the global carbon cycle, “blue carbon” habitats like seagrass meadows, are substantial carbon sinks and provide a key ecosystem service by sequestering and storing significant amounts of carbon, particularly belowground in plant roots and rhizomes. Recent work shows that within these habitats, sediment carbon concentrations vary spatially, with depth below the ground surface, and with time since establishment and that this variation can be explained by species- specific differences in vegetation and geomorphic context. These relationships are not well understood for seagrass species common to the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). Previous work on St. Thomas, USVI explored carbon storage in two native seagrass species (Thalassia testudinum and Syringodium filiforme), the invasive seagrass (Halophila stipulacea) and un-vegetated sand. Results suggest that H. stipulacea may be storing carbon in a comparable amount to native seagrass species.
Collecting additional sediment cores around Buck Island seeks to answer the question of carbon storage in seagrass habitats with time since establishment- another key variable that may play a role in predicting carbon storage in these habitats. Halophila stipulacea was fist documented in St. John in 2012, then in St. Thomas in 2013, and finally St. Croix in 2016. The invasion history of H. stipulacea across the USVI sets up a natural experimental design and allows for researchers to gain a better understanding of seagrass habitats as blue carbon ecosystems.If you would like additional information about this study, please contact: Clayton Pollock, NPS Biologist Ph 340-773-1460 x 238; clayton_pollock@nps.govThe National Park Service thanks all of our community members and friends for 52 years of support for Buck Island Reef NM and we look forward to an exciting year of events celebrating our unique resource.

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Fort Christiansvaern
Fort Christiansvaern
Fort Christiansvaern

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Located on the Christiansted

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