The flora and fauna of Tobago
A small bit of geological history to help explain the diversity of flora and fauna both on land and sea in Tobago.
Just after the last Ice Age, about 12,000 years ago, with rising sea levels, Trinidad and Tobago split from the mainland to the north and from each other. This explains why the two islands have a lot in common, but also explains the time alone which has allowed Tobago to develop its’ own unique beauties of the ocean and land. The reefs around Tobago are some of the most pristine in the Caribbean but Tobago is most famous for its’ drift dives. Don’t be freaked out if you haven’t done this before, there is plenty of tuition at hand. The Orinoco River flushes nutrients etc into the sea at times which can mean low visibility, but the reward is in the marine life and wonderful corals that thrive in these conditions. Expect to see rays, sharks, tarpon, octopus and a myriad of colourful fish in these warm waters.
If you’re more interested in land-based pursuits, try bird watching at some highly acclaimed sights, such as Buccoo Swamp or the Mountain Road where you will need to keep stopping to check out some of the more than 240 species which live on the island. If your dream bird spot is eluding you, visit Grafton Bird Sanctuary with managed bird feeding tables you should get to see the Bananaquits and Palm and Blue Gray Tangiers, wildly coloured parrots, red legged honey creepers and possibly even Audoban’s Shearwater!
Article written by Billy Hawkins.