The Birds and the Beasties

19 May

When we were considering our move to Bermuda, one of the first things I googled was “Bermuda wildlife”, largely to ensure there were no killer scorpions or mutant spiders with big teeth on the island (there aren’t). In fact, other than the occasional vacationing jellyfish and some poisonous millipedes at the east end of Bermuda, there are no harmful creatures here at all, other than a few ugly-looking critters (cockroaches) and cute but noisy beasts (tree frogs).

Birds

Along with the sparrows and the starlings, and the black and white Longtails, there are two more exotic birds here. Kiskadees, originating from nearbyish Trinidad and Tobago, have an awful squawk but beautiful feathers and are easily spotted by their yellow breasts. A much rarer bird is the Redbird, which I’ve only seen once, but, gosh, he was stunning! Bright scarlet with a Mohican style hairdo – he flapped down for a drink and then soared off again.

Chickens
We have a number of feral chickens, that strut along the pavement, and occasionally wait at the bus station for the number 7 (I think the big step onto the bus baffles them every time). This spring, we also saw a number of fluffy feral chicks tailing behind mummy!

Tree Frogs
These teeny tiny amphibians are the size of your thumbnail, but don’t be fooled by how cute they are – they make a flippin’ racket! Come dusk, they start to squeak their mating chorus. You’re probably thinking, honestly, how much noise can such a tiny little poppet make? Here’s how much:

Toads
Every now and then you’ll come across a big, fat toad hopping around the garden. Although one recently gave Rich the fright of his life when he hopped past his foot in the dark, we are definitely pro-toads as they eat the bugs! Which leads me nicely to…

Ants
Ants never fail to amaze me. Their tiny little noses sniff out sugar no matter where it’s kept. Recently we had some Easter Eggs, in their sealed boxes, in a zipped-up bag, on top of a suitcase in a closed cupboard. The ants found them! Thankfully one blast of insect spray gets rid of the blighters, but don’t ever squash one on the wall! Apparently that release some sort of pheromone which then attracts all of his buddies!

Cockroaches
If you read my Conquering the Cockroach post, you’ll know how I feel about these creatures. They might not sting or bite, but they can terrorise you with their disgustingly long, wandering antennae and freakishly speedy legs. Oh, and apparently they fly here too, and have been known to fly into people’s scooter helmets whilst they are driving. So, if you’re moving here, make sure you get a helmet with a visor, won’t you!

Thankfully the only other beasties Bermuda has are wood lice, earwigs and the much more pleasant honey-bees and butterflies.

Lizards

As the temperatures rise, so do the sightings of the lizards, often spotted scampering across a wall. There are a number of different breeds here from the small brownish ones, to the dip-dyed multi-coloured ones, like the one in the photo above (kindly provided by my father-in-law!).

Of course, being an island surrounded by coral reefs, we also have a huge number of incredibly beautiful tropical fish, sea turtles and other ocean creatures. But I’m going to save this for another blog post, when I’m able to share photographs with you, using our soon-to-be-purchased underwater camera!

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