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Micro forests take root across the island
Thursday, January 19, 2023

An effort to establish a series of “micro forests” across the island has established ten thriving plots, according to the Bermuda Zoological Society.


Successful First Year of Micro Forest Project
Thursday, January 19, 2023

The Bermuda Zoological Society [BZS] has highlighted the BZS Micro Forest Project, which has an aim to plant 1,500 native-compatible and endemic plants each year for three years.


BZS just misses out on award recognising use of drone technology
Monday, November 07, 2022

An island charity was shortlisted for an international award for its use of drone programming.

The Bermuda Zoological Society was nominated for a Drone Deploy Award for its use of Drone Deploy, an internet-based drone mapping programme.


BAMZ interns get hands-on experience in range of roles
Friday, October 21, 2022

Over the summer the Bermuda Zoological Society (BZS) had the privilege of affording a multitude of student summer positions at the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum & Zoo (BAMZ), through internship programme placements and volunteer opportunities. Within these roles the students were able to gain industry experience, explore the different areas of the facility, gain volunteer hours for their academic year, and acquire mentorships for their future within the industry of environmental studies and conservation.


Event to give young people a say in Blue Prosperity Plan
Friday, October 21, 2022

Young people were invited to provide input on how Bermuda can mitigate long-term threats such as climate change as part of a consultation on The Draft Blue Prosperity Plan.



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All the latest updates and news from the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum, and Zoo, one of Bermuda's leading visitor attractions!

BZS: Pond Remediation Project A Huge Success
Bernews
Thursday, January 11, 2018

The Bermuda Zoological Society’s [BZS] Wetlands Remediation Project [WRP], designated the HSBC Global Water Programme for Bermuda in 2014, said they had “great success in its efforts to make two ponds much less toxic for wildlife.”

“These findings are very encouraging since the toxicity of Bermuda’s ponds is a known threat to the island’s two endemic killifish species and its native diamondback terrapins, all locally protected species,” BSZ said.

“The HSBC Water Programme was a five-year, $100 million partnership with Earthwatch, Water Aid and the World Wildlife Fund established to provide a combination of water provision, protection and education, benefiting communities in need, enabling people to prosper, and driving economic development and growth. The Global HSBC Water Programme funded more than 59 water-related projects, with Bermuda being 1 in 35 participating countries.

HSBC Bermuda Volunteers assist the BZS with the remediation of the Cloverdale Pond

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“The principal objective of the WRP was to determine if aerating Bermuda pond sediments enabled sediment bacteria to break down poisonous petroleum hydrocarbons to non-toxic levels. The sources of these hydrocarbons, which are found in most of Bermuda’s ponds, include used motor oil, road run-off and vehicle emissions.

“Previously, laboratory studies had shown that these petroleum hydrocarbons [particularly polyaromatic hydrocarbons or PAHs] were responsible for the limb deformities seen in the island’s toads and the severe endocrine disruption [i.e. altered hormone levels] and impaired reproduction observed in Bermuda’s pond fish, toads and terrapins.

“Laboratory studies had also demonstrated that bacteria in the sediments of sampled ponds were deprived of oxygen and therefore not able to efficiently degrade PAHs. However, simply adding oxygen to sediments from these ponds in the laboratory enabled the bacteria to effectively consume the PAHs. These promising results needed to be tested in the field and this effort was made possible by the generous two-year grant from HSBC Group.

“Two ponds were selected for the study, Cloverdale Pond and Evan’s Pond. Cloverdale Pond was the first pond chosen for remediation due to its small size, its known severe effects on wildlife, and the fact that it harboured no protected species in case the process of aeration produced any toxic by-products.

“Evan’s Pond was selected as the second test site due to its threatened small population of genetically unique killifish. The ponds were divided into sections and each section was aerated for 6 to 8 hours a day, using solar powered compressors sending air through weighted air lines to small-bubble distribution manifolds.

Volunteers appreciate the wildlife at Cloverdale Pond

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Dr. Jamie Bacon, BZS Research Associate, Education Officer and Principal Investigator for the WRP, explained “It transpired that remediation on each section took approximately a year but by the end of that time, the levels of the 16 PAHs tested were reduced by 96-100% with 100% being a non-detectable level.

“Follow up laboratory studies using samples of remediated sediments from both ponds showed that they no longer caused endocrine disruption or impaired reproduction in fish. This was a fantastic result!”

Dr. Doug Fort, President of Fort Environmental Laboratories in Stillwater, Oklahoma and the project’s chief collaborator, added “The level of remediation accomplished far exceeded that which is typically achieved.

“The ability to reduce contamination to levels that do not adversely affect wildlife in the laboratory combined with presentation of a cleaner environment for humans and wildlife to interact with is a wonderful accomplishment.

“Without the support of HSBC Group, in concert with HSBC Bermuda, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the BZS, and the volunteers who participated in the effort, this would not have been possible.”

HSBC Bermuda CEO, Mark Watkinson said, “The Bermuda Zoological Society have demonstrated the importance of preserving our endemic wildlife as well as the adverse effects a compromised habitat can have on thriving eco-systems.

“HSBC is proud to have supported Dr. Bacon and Dr. Fort on this research to identify and reverse the causes of impaired reproduction and deformities on our endemic wildlife. The strength and biodiversity of our eco-systems is a good indicator of our own future health. Projects such as these, enables us to focus on the importance of environmental conservation – for the benefit of Bermuda’s future generations.”

The Bermuda Zoological Society have confirmed the next pond slated for remediation is the South Pond located on the Mid Ocean Golf Course.

They explained that this pond is a main feeding pond for the diamondback terrapins which” have a very poor hatching success rate due to pollution causing deformed embryos.”

The organisation is hoping for equal success rates with this initiative as has been achieved through the HSBC Water Programme remediation projects.