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Vauxhall Cave

May 8, 2005 - 15:00-16:00 EST

 

District: Vauxhall

Parish: St Elizabeth

WGS84 L/L: 18 10 34.5; 77 45 15.8 (Main Ent)

 

JAD69: 170075 E, 169381 N

JAD2001: 670186 E, 669670 N

Altitude: 170m WGS84

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

Type: Dry passage

Accessibility: Walk-in

Depth: 20m

Length: 90m

Explorers: JCC - 1971

Survey: N/A

JU Ref: Text - pg 364; Map - none

 

Entrance size: 3m W x 5m H

Entrance aspect: 190 deg true (Main ent)

Vegetation in general locale: Bush, farm

Vegetation at entrance: Bush

Rock type: White limestone

Bedding: Massive

Jointing: Moderate

Speleothems: Stals

Palaeo resources: None

Archaeo resources: None

Hydrology: Dry

Siltation: N/A

Sink: N/A

Rising: N/A

Stream passage with surface activity: N/A

Stream passage without surface activity: N/A

Dark zone: 0%.

Climate: Warm, dry.

Bats: <500

Bat guano: Little

Guano mining: Historical

Guano condition: No accumulation

Eleutherodactylus cundalli: None

Neoditomyia farri: None

Amblypygids: None

Periplaneta americana: None

Cave crickets: None

Sesarma: None

Other species: None

Visitation: Occasional

Speleothem damage: Much

Graffiti: Some

Garbage: Some

Ownership: Private

Protection: None

 

Vulnerability: Low. This cave was heavily mined for guano and is very degraded.

 

Vauxhall Cave

May 8, 2005

Team: Stewart, Conolley

Notes: RS Stewart

Main Entrance: WGS84 - 18 10 34.5, 77 45 15.8; Alt: 170; Accuracy: +/- 10m; Aspect: 190 deg true

East Entrance: WGS84 - 18 10 34.4, 77 45 14.8; Alt: 170; Accuracy: +/- 10m; Aspect: 45 deg true

Report for Vauxhall Cave - August 3, 2010

We found this site easily, with the assistance of the Thompson family, who own the land, and a friend of theirs, Garfield Harris, who led us to the main entrance. We would like to thank them for their kind assistance.

The cave appears to be an old, stranded stream passage, joint-developed, with only this section left in an outcropping of hill, and the terrain on either end eroded away. The passage is quite high, over 25m, and equally wide in sections. There are two entrances, one on the west that can be entered via scramble up a hill, and one at the east end of the passage that is 10+m up a vertical cliff. The entire cave is in the twilight zone.

The cave is a seasonal roost for Artibeus, although there were none present during our visit (Garfield told us he sees them there in Sept). This occupation must go back for many centuries, because large-scale guano mining that has taken place here managed to remove over 10m of material from the floor of the cave. It would be suspected that much of this was nutrient-enriched dirt. We do not know the exact time-frame when this happened, but it was evidently since the 1971 visit by the JCC, because the 7m drop they mention no longer exists. The passage has been excavated enough to have removed this. We actually have never seen anything like it before: the original level of the dirt floor is visible by the staining on the walls of the passage, and our estimate of 10m is conservative - it might be closer to 15.

There are no trog inverts, because there is no dark-zone. The passage is only 80-90 metres long, and both entrances are large enough to admit much daylight. The humidity and temperature are close to outside ambient, because of the breeze that blows through.

We are listing this cave with a low vulnerability, because it is so degraded already. The Artibeus are very tolerant of human disturbance, and would be expected to continue to use the cave as much as in the past. No other Chiropteran species are likely to roost here, because it is well-lit by the entrances.


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