Photo courtesy of the
Report: Montserrat: October 2001. By Dennis Buss. Recently,
Manfredi and I visited Montserrat. It was very difficult fo find
information, but we discovered that it is very easy to visit this colorful
island, and it is relatively straightforward to see the Montserrat Oriole.
Larry and I wrote the attached trip report for inclusion on your website
so that others will have the confidence to visit Montserrat.
- the Caribbean Emerald Isle - Despite its small size,
supports at least 132 tree species, 59 species of birds and 13 mammals.
The Montserrat oriole (pictured) is found nowhere else. Also restricted
to Montserrat are the galliwasp (pictured) and another (unnamed) lizard.
The endangered and edible 'mountain chicken' (a frog) is found only on
Montserrat and Dominica. Several other species are restricted to Montserrat
and some nearby islands.
Elusive Monserrat Oriole - "The first thing most people can
you about Montserrat's natural wonders is that it has a volcano. Next,
they probably mention the bird. So when I heard that the Forestry Department
was leading a walk into the hills to look at this bird, I signed up. At
an indecent hour of the morning, I flopped out of my car and sized up my
Oriole - The Montserrat Oriole, endemic to the island
Montserrat, was previously regarded as threatened by loss of habitat to
agriculture. Hurricane Hugo and the ongoing eruption of the Soufriere volcano
have further reduced Oriole numbers and habitat. The current best
estimate is that 57% of habitat has been destroyed. Unfortunately, habitat
destruction is concentrated in prime habitat areas, and in ghauts (gulleys)
which are essential to population survival. As of November 1997, 76% of
prime habitat has been completely destroyed. Of the three main population
areas, only one (Centre Hills) currently maintains substantial habitat.
See also the RSPB
webpage on the Oriole, with several photos of both male and female.