Enjoy guide Jesse Fagan's slideshow of images from his 2010 Bahamas tour. And read Jesse's article about Kirtland's Warbler history and sightings on our recent tours.
Lying just across the Straits of Florida, the Bahamas are home to more than 21 species that have rarely or never been recorded in the US. Our tour visits three of the richest islands, where all of these 21 West Indian specialties can be found. We'll begin on Abaco; with its extensive Caribbean Pine forest and mixed hardwood coppice, it is home to many species including the endemic Bahama Yellowthroat, Cuban Pewee, and the Bahamian subspecies of Cuban Parrot. And while hummingbirds are few, they include the sparkling Cuban Emerald and the endemic, purple and-rose-gorgeted Bahama Woodstar.
From Abaco we'll travel to Eleuthera Island. Among the birding highlights are the oversized Great Lizard-Cuckoo that haunts the tall coppice, and possibly a Kirtland's Warbler, an endangered species recently found wintering on just a few islands. (We found five individuals of this rare warbler in 2009, another in 2010, three in 2011, eight in 2013; and three in 2014!) In the process, we'll have time to enjoy some West Indian butterflies including such beauties as the Atala and Polydamas Swallowtail, along with another 30 species or so that we have recorded on our trips.
In 2015, we will begin traveling to the island of Andros for two nights, where we can hope to find the endemic Bahama Oriole. This species is only found on Andros (now extirpated from Abaco) with a population estimated to be around just 250 individuals.
So, if island endemics, learning new butterflies, eating cracked conch, and trying Kalik beer all sound like a good time (they are), then join us in the Bahamas!
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