Serrana Bank

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Serrana Bank.
Serrana Bank.

The Serrana Bank 14°20′N 80°20′W / 14.333°N 80.333°W / 14.333; -80.333 (Serrana Bank) is an atoll in the Atlantic Ocean. It is mostly an underwater reef of about 50 km long and 13 km wide and has six cays, or islets, the most prominent of which is Southwest Cay.

The cays from south to north are:

  • Southwest Cay (500 by 200 meters)[1][2]
  • South Cay (150 by 25 meters)[1]
  • Little Cay (less than 100 meters in diameter)[1]
  • East Cay (80 by 40 meters)[3]
  • Narrow Cay
  • North Cay

Serrana Bank is now Colombian territory, though it was claimed and occupied by the United States until 1981. A former base for the US military, it is now mostly visited by lobster fishermen.

Serrana Bank is believed to be named after the Spanish castaway Pedro Serrano. It was first shown on a Dutch map in 1545 with this name. They were mapped more extensively by the English in 1660.

On September 8, 1972, the United States and Colombia signed a treaty recognizing the latter's sovereignty over Quita Sueño Bank, Roncador Cay, and Serrana Bank. This treaty became effective on September 17, 1981.

On September 3, 2007 the eye of Category 5 Hurricane Felix passed over Serrana Bank.[4]

On November 19, 2012, in regard to Nicaraguan claims to the islands the International Court of Justice (ICJ) found, unanimously, that the Republic of Colombia has sovereignty over Serrana Bank.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Milliman, John D. (15 August 1969), Atoll Research Bulletin No. 129 Four Southwestern Caribbean Atolls: Courtown Cays, Albuquerque Cays, Roncador Bank and Serrana Bank (PDF), The Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC, USA, retrieved 2013-08-16
  2. ^ Cortes, Jorge (2003). Latin American Coral Reefs. Gulf Professional Publishing. p. 283. ISBN 978-0444540256. Retrieved 2013-08-16.
  3. ^ "Territorial and Maritime Dispute (Nicaragua v. Colombia). Counter-Memorial of the Republic of Colombia" (PDF). 1. International Court of Justice. 11 November 2008: 30. para. 2.23. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-09-15. Retrieved 2013-08-16.
  4. ^[dead link]
  5. ^ International Court of Justice (2012). "Territorial and maritime dispute (Nicaragua vs Colombia)" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-11-27.

External links[edit]