A Few Fabulous Island Faces

 

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Despite being 560 nautical miles from America's coast, animals managed to reach Bermuda before humans discovered it. They flew, drifted on ocean currents and blew in with hurricanes. After Bermuda was settled, animals were brought here by settlers. However they arrived here, Bermuda's terrestrial wildlife has had to adapt to the extreme conditions associated with island life. High humidity and temperatures, strong seasonal winds and very few bodies of fresh water are just a few of the ongoing challenges that our wildlife faces.

 

How many species of animals do you think have been recorded on an island just 20.6 miles square? Believe it or not, the answer is around 8330. Of these species, approximately 70 are endemic, meaning they can be found nowhere else on our earth except for this tiny island. Bermuda's most recognized endemic animals are arguably the critically endangered Rock Skink and Cahow (Bermuda petrel).

 

 

A Lovely Whistling Tree Frog
A Lovely Whistling Tree Frog
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Land Hermit Crab
Land Hermit Crab

This very rare crab depends on Bermuda's West Indian Topshells for its survival.

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Land Hermit Crab
Land Hermit Crab

A golf ball sized land hermit crab scavenges on Nonsuch Island. When fully grown this crab can support a shell the size of a large orange.

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Beach Ghost
Beach Ghost

This crafty crab is super quick and elusive. They inhabit Bermuda's beaches but are rarely seen.

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Whistling Tree Frog
Whistling Tree Frog
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Whistling Tree Frog
Whistling Tree Frog

Small frog, big voice!

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Lovely Little Peeper
Lovely Little Peeper

Just 1 cm in length from head to toe.

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Bermuda Skink
Bermuda Skink

If you have never seen this reptile before, you will certainly not be the only one. The Bermuda skink is one our planet's rarest reptiles.

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Bermuda Skink
Bermuda Skink

A stunning adult skink. These reptiles are critically endangered. Habitat loss and introduced predators are the main reasons for their decline.

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Adult Bermuda Skink
Adult Bermuda Skink

These animals are very quick and difficult to photograph. This adult was 8 inches in length.

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Diamondback terrapin
Diamondback terrapin

This odd looking turtle is Bermuda's native terrapin. They are very rare. Less than 100 adults are believed to live in Bermuda.

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Diamondback terrapin
Diamondback terrapin

These endangered terrapins can only be found in a few landlocked ponds on Mid Ocean Golf Course.

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Diamondback terrapin
Diamondback terrapin

Females of this species lay on average 5 eggs in a clutch. Unfortunately, hatchling rates are low due to the build up of toxins in their bodies.

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Good Morning Miss Toad!
Good Morning Miss Toad!

This toad enjoys a dip in our bird bath every evening. She is always here in the morning!

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The Tiniest One
The Tiniest One

That is my thumb nail, and that is one very tiny whistling tree frog. Don't forget to notice and appreciate the small things in life!

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Toads are not native to Bermuda, but anything that eats cockroaches is welcome in my garden.

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Sally Lightfoot Crab
Sally Lightfoot Crab

These tough crustaceans can withstand the most violent of waves by hiding deep within crevices or clinging to rock surfaces with their powerful legs.

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Sally Lightfoot Crab
Sally Lightfoot Crab

During seasonal hurricanes, waves hit the shoreline with such force that large chunks of rock are sometimes dislodged and tossed further up the coast as well as inland. Despite this, Sally Lightfoot crabs are right at home here.

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Sally Lightfoot Crab
Sally Lightfoot Crab

These beautiful crabs add a splash of vibrant colour to Bermuda's coastline.

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A Jamaican anole flashes his dewlap.

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Breakfast in Bermuda
Breakfast in Bermuda

A Warwick lizard tries to consume a fritillary butterfly caterpillar!

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Jake the Jamaican anole has lived in our garden for many years. We have a healthy population of these anoles on our Southampton property. Watching them is always amusing.

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This little guy is on the cover of my first photography book - BERMUDA. I am sure he would be most proud!

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Whistling Tree Frog
Whistling Tree Frog

So tiny and so cute!

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If there is one thing peepers love, it's the rain! And if there is one thing I love it is listening to them singing on warm rainy nights.

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Ready to Fight!
Ready to Fight!

Unfortunately Cuban anoles do not belong in Bermuda. They were first discovered to be living here in 2011.

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Cuban Anole
Cuban Anole

It is assumed that these anoles made their way to Bermuda in potted plants.

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This Cuban anole was eyeing up another male. Minutes later they were locked in battle - unfortunately in thick foliage where I was unable to photograph them.

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Mangrove crab
Mangrove crab

Bermuda's mangroves are the northern most mangroves in the Atlantic Ocean. They are a very important habitat for many species of animal.

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This Sally Lightfoot crab has chosen to rest next to a West Indian Top shell. These native snails were hunted to extinction by early settlers but in 1982 were reintroduced. They are now protected and doing fairly well.

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