Site description (2006 baseline)
Grand Etang is a large saline pond located in the gated Lowlands subdivision of St. Martin. It is approximately 50 hectares in size. Due to its high salinity (>100 parts per thousand), the pond has little vegetation. At the west end, a small pond is separated from the larger pond by a narrow strip of land. Electric wires on poles cross the pond at this point. The surrounding land is low hills of scrub habitat interspersed with roads and homes on large estates. A dirt road runs directly next to the shore along one side. An exclusive resort borders the road.
Least Terns nest on a sandy spit located in the smaller pond of Grand Etang. Wilson's Plover nests at the same location and in surrounding areas. In the summer of 2004, nesting success of both species was monitored by EPIC. During that time, a high count of 180 Least Tern nests and 82 breeding pairs was recorded. Ten pairs of Wilson's Plover were recorded. Black-necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus also breeds at Grand Etang (25 nests).Regionally limited species found at this site include Green-throated Carib Eulampis holosericeus, Antillean Crested Hummingbird Orthorhyncus cristatus, Pearly-eyed Thrasher Margarops fuscatus, and Lesser Antillean Bullfinch Loxigilla noctis.
Non-bird biodiversity: Not applicable.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Grand Etang. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/grand-etang-iba-st-martin-(to-france) on 07/12/2023.