Virtual Ecotour…Trinidad!

By Jason Beale, Manager, Abbott’s Mill Nature Center 
Scarlet Ibis returning to roost in Caroni Swamp. Photo by Mike Riska.


Looking for a way to shake the wintertime blues with a bit of tropical tonic?  Delaware Nature Society will be offering two preview programs of our June 11-17, 2010 trip to Trinidad.  Experience the warmth and spectacular wildlife of Trinidad and the trip headquarters, the Asa Wright Nature Centre and Lodge.  Trinidad is a well-known ecotourism destination and the trip features day trips to a variety of tropical habitats.  This is an excellent destination for first-time visitors to the tropics, but has the biological diversity to provide veterans with new discoveries on each visit.


White-necked Jacobin, a spectacular species of hummingbird. Photo by Angie Dunson

The country of Trinidad and Tobago is located off the northeastern coast of South America (Venezuela).  Trinidad, the larger island is shaped like a boot and is about 26 miles southwest of its sister island, Tobago.  Though considered part of the Caribbean island chain, they are geologically and biologically extensions of mainland South America.

A view of the rain forest from the veranda at the Asa Wright Nature Centre. Photo by Joe Sebastiani.

   The 2010 Trinidad trip will take you to rainforest, freshwater marsh, savannah, mangrove, and coastal habitat.  Though birds are a major focus of the trip, Trinidad boasts hundreds of species of butterflies, flowering plants, and a healthy diversity of animals including amphibians, reptiles, and mammals.  

A Nocturnal Oilbird perches on a cave wall at the Asa Wright Nature Centre. Photo by Mike Riska.

Two unique features of the trip are visits to see Leatherback Sea Turtles and the nocturnal Oilbirds.  The Leatherback is the world’s largest turtle and return to Trinidad’s Atlantic Coast to nest each year.   Oilbirds, the only nocturnal, fruit-eating bird in the world, navigate using echolocation.  Asa Wright hosts the world’s most accessible colony. 

I will be conducting two preview nights complete with a powerpoint presentation and short video about Trinidad, its wildlife, and what you can expect on the trip in June.  If nothing else, come out and enjoy some complimentary snacks and Rum Punch!  See below for dates and time.

Leatherback Sea Turtle on the beach laying eggs. Photo by Mike Riska


Trinidad Ecotour Preview Evenings 

Thursday, March 4, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm Ashland Nature Center, Hockessin 

To register or for more information, call (302) 239-2334 or email Joe Sebastiani. 

Sunday, March 14, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm, Abbott’s Mill Nature Center, Milford 

To register or for more information, call (302) 422-0847 or email Jason Beale. 

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