Royal Gazette: Plan to enhance nature reserve named after murder victim

Royal Gazette: Plan to enhance nature reserve named after murder victim

The Bermuda National Trust hopes to create a “stronghold” for endemic plants at a Paget nature reserve on the Railway Trail.

According to a conservation management plan submitted to the Department of Planning, only about a third of the plants at the Rebecca Middleton Nature Reserve are native or endemic, but the BNT hopes to bring that figure to 90 per cent.

“Once a native and endemic stronghold has been created and nurtured to maturity, invasive species are less able to take over,” the CMP writer said.

“Indigenous woodland is more biodiverse and better able to withstand hurricanes and cope with climate change.

“This CMP furthers the Bermuda National Trust’s mission to protect and promote Bermuda’s unique natural and cultural heritage for everyone, for ever.”

The plan said the reserve, named after a young woman murdered on the island in 1996, was on a popular and well used section of the Railway Trail off Tribe Road No 3 in Paget.

“The conservation of this space is not only important because of the ecosystem services it provides but also out of respect for her [Rebecca’s] family and friends,” the CMP said.

“Ultimately a space like this promotes community healing and wellbeing, as well as the obvious benefits open space has for human health.”

The documents noted that the reserve recently received some attention thanks to a grant given to the BNT from the Bermuda End-to-End intended to benefit reserves that border the Railway Trail.

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August 18, 2023 News