Part of the Puerto Rico manjack’s preferred limestone habitat on Anegada occurs within a designated Ramsar site (1) (10), and legislation is being prepared to declare this a protected area (1). Protected Wildlife legislation for Anegada is also being revised (1) and an action plan has been produced for the island’s coastal biodiversity, as part of a Darwin Initiative Project (9).
Recommended conservation measures for Anegada’s plants include long-term habitat protection, the control of invasive species, seed collection and ongoing monitoring of key species (5) (9). Anegada has been suggested as a prime candidate for designation as a ‘Caribbean Important Plant Area’, but conservation measures urgently need to be implemented before the various threats have a lasting negative impact on the island’s biodiversity (3) (7).
Two of the locations in Puerto Rico at which the Puerto Rico manjack may still occur are within protected areas, the Guánica Commonwealth Forest and the Vieques Island National Wildlife Refuge (3). This species is also listed as a Candidate species for threatened status by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (11).
Cuttings of the Puerto Rico manjack are held at the J.R. O’Neal Botanic Garden, on the island of Tortola (5), and experiments have been recommended to find ways to artificially propagate this species, which may allow conservationists to establish new populations (3). Studies are also underway into the Puerto Rico manjack’s distribution, abundance and biology (4), which may help to inform conservation efforts for this rare shrub.
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