Many know North Island for being the ultra-luxurious, ultra-exclusive resort based in the Seychelles, with pristine white sandy beaches and sparkling blue waters perfect for that dream romantic getaway. While that is certainly true, what fewer people know is that North Island is also a fantastic destination for birdwatching.
It is thought that some 59 species of birds inhabit North Island throughout the year, 13 of which are resident, 6 which are seabirds, and the rest which migrate to the island from time to time. It is not merely the number of species that makes North Island a bird lover’s paradise, however, but the rarity of certain species. Take the Seychelles white-eye for instance, which up until a few years ago was one of the rarest species of bird on earth. Now thanks to the conservation efforts of the island the population is growing, at the last count in November 2014 around 100 birds were recorded up from the 25 introduced in 2007. Rare species of birds have also been known to migrate to the island, indeed the fourth-ever recorded sighting of a corncrake in the Seychelles was on North Island. Rare species asides, it is also possible to see species native to the Seychelles on North Island, such as the Seychelles blue pigeon, which can only be seen in the wild in a handful of other places. With such a variety of rare and exciting species to be seen, a trip to North Island should be on the cards for any bird enthusiast.
All of this is owed to the Noah’s Ark Project, the conservation effort that North Island is making to restore the island to its original state. By reintroducing indigenous plant species and ridding the island of rodents, feral animals, and invasive plants, North Island is seeing a revival in not only its bird species, but in other wildlife such as sea turtles which are nesting on the island again. The reintroduction of endemic flora and fauna not only has the benefit of encouraging birds to return to the island, but it is also something to admire in itself, with the lush greenery adding to the beauty of an already stunning island. North Island continues to flourish as a natural haven, taking it beyond being just an idyllic honeymoon destination, and adding another dimension which beckons nature lovers to tread its soft shores.
To plan your trip to North Island, get in contact with one of our experts via email or on 020 7843 3500.