Wednesday, 17 February 2016

North Island - First Impressions

Honeymoon Bay

Well its finally here, I have arrived on North Island and first impressions are it is fantastic, unique and I have died and gone to heaven.

Before arriving on the project I spent a week on Mahe to explore and visit places like the Botanical Gardens where I saw such beauties as the protected Coco de Mer which has also been introduced onto North. From the moment I met CJ off the staff boat I was made to feel completely at home and welcome. North Island is overwhelmingly beautiful. Tarryn gave us a guided tour of the island and explained the ethos of the project. Like CJ she was so welcoming and captivated us with an island tour.

Elliot at work with the critically endangered Hawksbill Turtle

Next its West Beach patrol and we were introduced to Elliott who after 7 years on the island is just bursting with knowledge and enthusiasm for everything that moves, flys, swims and grows out of the ground. After a visit to the secluded honeymoon bay we move to West Bay to patrol in search of Turtle tracks.We not only found the tracks but Mrs Hawksbill herself is there to greet us with an outstanding nesting display.  It is now the season for the stunning Hawksbill Turtle and we were so lucky to watch one laying on our very first day.   

The next activity to learn was Tortoise monitoring.We patrolled on the electric buggy and found a number of the big boys including the 180 year old Brutus.We log their location for future analysis. 
East Beach patrol and we find another new turtle nest but mum has already left the scene. We learn the how to identify where the egg chamber is likely to be and designate the nest with pegs and a `coconut sign`.

White Tailed Tropicbird on a chick.

Our final Beach of the day is Petit Anse which doubles as the staff beach and to finish an already amazing day we see a Long Tailed Tropicbird sat on her nest at the base of a tree.  They sometimes nest on the ground and only have one egg.  Quite a beautiful ending to a wonderful, fulfilling and enriching first day with so much more to look forward to.

Jeremy from UK

No comments:

Post a Comment