The Quill, Sint Eustatius

Site description (2006 baseline):

Site location and context
The Quill is the highest point on St. Eustatius (601 m) and forms the southeast part of the island. There is no human settlement above 250 meters elevation, which is designated as the Quill National Park. The park includes the vegetated caldera within this volcanic mountain. Goats are sometimes found grazing in the area, despite regulations against such activity.

Key biodiversity
Limited-range species which occur at the Quill include Bridled Quail Dove Geotrygon mystacea, Purple-throated Carib Eulampis jugularis, Green-throated Carib Eulampis holosericeus, Antillean Crested Hummingbird Orthorhyncus cristatus, BrownTrembler Cinclocerthia ruficauda pavida, Scaly-breasted Thrasher Margarops fuscus, Pearly-eyed Thrasher Margarops fuscatus, and Lesser Atillean Bullfinch Loxigilla noctis. One Scaly-breasted Thrasher was observed at the Quill in 2003, the last recorded sighting being in 1927. Breeding needs to be confirmed for this species. There is little data on migrant birds which use the Quill, but it would not be expected to be a significant overwintering or stopover area due to its small area.

Non-bird biodiversity: The restricted-range species Antillean Iguana Iguana delicatissima and Red-bellied Racer Alsophis rufiventris and the endemic Statia Morning Glory Ipomoea sphenophylla are present within the Quill Park

Habitat and land use
The slopes of the Quill are thorn scrub while the caldera area is evergreen seasonal and elfin forest.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Grazing by untended goats has been problematic in the past. However, enforcement of an animal registry program has begun, which will decrease the incidence of grazing within the park.

Conservation responses/actions for key biodiversity
STENAPA is the St. Eustatius park service and oversees conservation management for the Quill. Hiking trails are well maintained by volunteers and staff while botanical interests, such as the endemic Statia Morning Glory, are protected. The only known recent avian survey of the Quill was conducted by EPIC in March 2003. However, access to the caldera was restricted due to trail repairs.

Protected areas
The proposed IBA is comprised of the Quill National Park, a protected area from 250 meters elevation to the summit and caldera of the Quill.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: The Quill, Sint Eustatius. Downloaded from on 21/02/2024.