Seychelles Bird Watching

Those looking to do a little bird watching in Seychelles will be rewarded with a destination that provides a myriad of exciting opportunities. Migrants, vagrants, sea birds, and land birds are all found inhabiting the Seychelles, which is a sort of African Galapagos in many regards. While you might not find the greatest variety of bird species here, a good amount of the Seychelles birds are quite rare, being endemic just to the Seychelles. These are some of the planet's rarest endemic birds, so what Seychelles birding amounts to, more or less, is quality over quantity. One of the best things about bird watching in Seychelles is the fact that you don't necessarily have to arrange a special tour to do so. While you enjoy such renowned reserves as the Vallee de Mai on Praslin Island, and the Veuve Reserve on La Digue, you'll be able to casually spot some unique avian species as you go. If Seychelles bird watching is the focus of your Seychelles vacation, then you can by all means plan your trip around it with special tours and such.

Most folks who are planning Seychelles birding trips start on the main island of Mahe, which is the ideal springboard for island-hopping excursions of all kinds. Mahe itself is an excellent place to do some birdwatching, as are other granitic islands like Praslin and La Digue. Bird Island, which is found relatively close to the main group of granitic islands, has quite a proper name indeed, and many Seychelles bird watching trips based out of Mahe include it. Sooty Terns, Fairy Terns, Saunders Terns, and Terns of other varieties are quite abundant on Bird Island. The granitic islands of the Seychelles are utterly breathtaking, and they are certainly ideal for those for birdwatchers of all ranks. For the most serious birders, trips to the coralline islands of the Seychelles should also be considered. The coralline islands of the Seychelles, such as Farquhar, Aldabra Island, and the Amirantes, are less-developed and harder to reach, though if you can get to them, they can be excellent places to view some of the fascinating Seychelles birds.

Some of the best Seychelles birding destinations are the small, granitic islands of Aride and Cousin, which are easy to reach from both Mahe and Praslin. Both of these islands are nature reserves, and there are no overnight accommodations on them, but that doesn't mean you can visit them on day trips. Some of Seychelles birds that you will likely spot on these islands are the Magpie Robin and Seychelles Fody. Aride Island is home to more than a million birds from about 10 different species, and it's the only place in the Seychelles granitic islands where you can spot red-tailed tropicbirds. Cousin Island offers up the Seychelles Warbler, which for a considerable amount of time could only be found here. Not far off on Praslin Island, the Vallee de Mai Reserve is home to the rare Seychelles Black Parrot. And, should you head to the slower-paced La Digue Island, a walk through the Veuve Reserve should reveal at least a few Seychelles Paradise Flycatchers, which are without question among the most rare of Seychelles birds.

Heading further out to the Outer Islands of the Seychelles, among the more interesting birds you will spot are the Frigate Birds, which give name to the country's Fregate Island. These birds are a joy to watch, as they employ some pretty impressive, mid-air acrobatics to steal food away from other sea birds. Frigates can actually be found throughout the Seychelles, much like Grey Plovers. Many more intriguing species of birds are to be seen while bird watching in Seychelles, and though a Seychelles birding vacation will prove fun, exciting, and rewarding on its own, there are birding packages that can also include other west Indian Ocean islands, such as Madagascar, Mauritius, and Reunion. Throw in these destinations with the Seychelles, and you can start adding even more unique, and sometimes bizarre, avian species to the list. It is important to note that some of the smaller and less-developed islands in the Seychelles are only open to visitors on a reserved basis, and sometimes you must make arrangements ahead of time if you wish to visit, which is very much the case with Aldabra Island, for example.

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