Last week, the well-known Dutch Television show ‘Bestemming’ was on Sint Maarten to film and document Nature Foundation’s activities that are funded by the Dutch National Postcode Lottery. The Dutch television episode will mainly showcase the work done by the Foundation and the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance in their ‘Save our Sharks’ project which aims to protect and manage sharks around the Dutch Caribbean Islands as well as their coral restoration activities.
Dutch celebrity and Postcode Lottery Ambassador Winston Gerschtanowitz visited the Nature Foundation and took part in the shark project to show the public the importance of these creatures. “It was unbelievable to be so surprised by the beautiful underwater world of St Maarten. I now fully understand how important, valuable and worthy the work is that environmental protectors do in the Dutch Caribbean. Their love for sharks was very impressive to see!’’ says Winston Gerschtanowitz, presenter of the show.
On Sint Maarten the film crew from Endemol Shine Group filmed for almost three days with the Nature Foundation, following all the work they do for shark conservation and research including scuba diving and tagging sharks to find out about their movement patterns. The film crew also visited the Foundation’s coral nursery in attempt to restore coral reefs. The crew also learned about St Maarten’s environmental issues such as the serious impact of the landfill and sewage input to our marine life and environment.
During the rough days at sea the team successfully caught two Tiger Sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier), including a 2.6m male, which was given the name Winston due to his shark tagging efforts during the day.
Winston Gerschtanowitz also scuba dived with sharks and showed the public the gentle nature showing that the animal is not to be feared: “I did not scuba dive for a long time, however I felt totally comfortable diving with St Maarten sharks, it was an awesome experience to remember for a lifetime!”
The Dutch Postcode Lottery episode will be broadcasted on the Dutch Television channel RTL4 in the new season of ‘Bestemming’ in September or October this year.
Thanks to Ocean Explorers Dive Center for the Pictures!