Thursday, December 27, 2012

2012 Year in Review: Good coppice

In 14 years of going to the island of Eleuthera, I've always been as intrigued by the interior of the island as much as the famed beaches. The seashore is a lot of fun, for a number of reasons, but the scrubby interior has a great deal of interesting flora and fauna, too. So it was exciting to learn during our spring trip this year that the Leon Levy Native Plant Preserve recently opened within minutes of the home base of North Palmetto Point. The preserve, part of the Bahamas National Trust, features lengthy trails through the native coppice forest as well as mangrove wetlands and a medicinal plant garden. The highlight is a hand-constructed tower atop a hill that offers amazing views of the Eleuthera's interior and of the Atlantic Ocean. We saw several bird species on a steamy day including migrants like northern parula and northern waterthrush. The preserve is the only national park on Eleuthera, and a lot of planning and resources have gone into it. It's a great addition to a special island.

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