Dominica on the hunt for long-lost Diablotin bird

Batibou beach, Dominica.

Batibou beach, Dominica. Image by Matthias Ripp / CC BY 2.0

Bird-watching enthusiast may soon be able to add the rare Diablotin bird to their list of Dominica’s  feathered inhabitants, if a new research project to find the bird is successful. The Diablotin hasn’t been seen on Dominica for 150 years, but was once so well known to the Caribbean island that its highest peak is named Morne Diablotin after the bird.

Diablotins are nocturnal birds that spend much of their time at sea, but nest atop mountains in pristine forest habitats. Recently the bird was discovered on the island of Hispaniola (shared between Haiti and the Dominican Republic), which has spurred on Dominica’s research programme. The island has long been known as the Caribbean’s top nature-lover’s destination due to its untamed rainforests and numerous eco-projects. Scientists will use techniques including radar to find the birds’ flight paths and nesting areas.

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