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Nanny Cave

May 17, 2005 - 16:00-17:30 EST


District: Thornton

Parish: St Elizabeth

WGS84 L/L: 18 12 12.4, 77 43 55.2


JAD69: 172456 E, 172382 N

JAD2001: 672567 E, 672670 N

Altitude: 180m WGS84

Accuracy: +/- 10m horizontal; +/- 15m vertical

Type: Resurgence cave

Accessibility: Walk-in/swim

Depth: 0

Length: 335m

Explorers: NSS - 1987

Survey: None

JU Ref: Text - pg 265; Map - none


Entrance size: 20m W x 3m H

Entrance aspect: 120 deg true

Vegetation in general locale: Farm, bush

Vegetation at entrance: Meadow

Rock type: Yellow - White Limestone junction

Bedding: Moderate

Jointing: Moderate

Speleothems: Few stals

Palaeo resources: None

Archaeo resources: None

Hydrology: Wet

Siltation: Moderate

Sink: N/A

Rising: Active

Stream passage with surface activity: Minor flow

Stream passage without surface activity: N/A

Dark zone: >90%

Climate: Cool, humid.

Bats: >500

Bat guano:  Some

Guano mining: Some

Guano condition: Compact/wet

Eleutherodactylus cundalli: Some

Neoditomyia farri: None seen

Amblypygids: None seen

Periplaneta americana: None

Cave crickets: Some

Sesarma: Some

Other species: Sesarma was not verleyi. Possibly fossarum, although it looked rather like a windsor. Leg collected for DNA analysis.

Visitation: Occasional

Speleothem damage: None

Graffiti: None

Garbage: None

Ownership: Private

Protection: None


Vulnerability: Medium. Occasional visitation by people of the district, but they don't go far due to water. It is used as a spring, so they have an incentive to not muddy it.


Nanny Cave

May 17, 2005

Team: Stewart, Conolley, Slack

Notes: RS Stewart

This cave was easily located in the area where it was said to be. When we were on the road along the stretch where we expected to find a lane leading to the entrance, we only had to ask two local people before we had it nailed down. It helped that they know the cave by the same name it's listed with.

Access is as follows: Take the westwards of the two roads that lead north out of Thornton. Once near 18 12 19.7 N, 77 43 29.6 W, look for a small road that goes down to the left (that position wasn't GPS'd in the field, but derived from our calibrated topos afterwards). Follow it until it ends in a wet spot. Hike along a bouldered stream towards the cave position found in the table above (that one was taken at the cave). When you're close to those coords, look at the hill to your right, and find a small stream that crosses the glade, flowing from the hill. You'll find the entrances. There are three close together, with one fairly large. They stretch across about 30 metres of hillside, and I don't recall exactly where I was standing when I ran the GPS, but the position will have you close enough to spot it.

Rainy-season prevented us from going too far into this cave, but I did manage to float in 30-40 metres. The outer chambers are being used as roost for Artibeus, in good numbers when we were there (over 500). These chambers soon lower to an active streamway (year-round we believe - definitely used as a spring) that has deep silt on the bottom. I couldn't walk in this, because I just sank away, and instead hung off rocks on the wall of the passage and floated. Before too long, the passage lowered further leaving only about 75cm of airspace above the water, and because of the season, I pulled the plug there.

Sesarma were observed that were not verleyi. A leg was collected, but Dr Schubart at the time of this writing is still working on the DNA analysis for the first batch of legs, and has not done this one yet. To me, it looked much like S. windsor that I've seen at Rock Spring (confirmed by Schubart), but they are not known in this corner of the Cockpit Country - S. fossarum would be a more likely possibility. When results are in hand, they will be included in a supplement to this report.

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