Tuesday, March 3, 2015

March 3: Andros

A day of movement: fly back to Nassau, rent a car and bird around New Providence for a few hours, with stops at Harrold & Wilson National Park and Clifton Heritage National Park, then squeeze into another little plane for the 15-minute hop over to Andros. On Andros we find ourselves in a ghost town of sorts. The Lighthouse Marina was, according to all sources, an international hot spot in its day, visited by the Rat Pack, and the Duke of Windsor and Wallis Simpson. Now, thanks to some bad luck, it's owned by the government, which explains the near-empty dining room, poor wifi link, empty pool, overgrown tennis court, and shoddy furnishings. We walk down the pier, past the one yacht and two sailboats, out to the point past a wrecked ship, a faded 1892 lighthouse and cannons, and around the corner to a little beach with a dilapidated tiki bar. You can almost hear the tinkle of ice in glasses, faint laughter. The wreck was named, appropriately, "Old Glory."
The one thing this place has going for it is the Bahama Oriole, our last target endemic. And luckily for us, it's one of the first birds we find here--two, in fact--and with 300 left in the world, probably the rarest bird I'll ever see.

A few hundred left,
but the oriole only cares
that one is female.
Bahama Oriole
Lighthouse Marina
Lighthouse and waxing moon

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