Year 6 students on their 3 day residential trip to Praslin took the opportunity to visit nearby Aride Island. Aride is the most northerly of the granitic islands and home to over a million birds making it the most important site in the Indian Ocean for sea bird breeding.
When the students on the Catalina spotted the first sooty terns and frigate birds in the clear blue skies they knew that they were approaching the island. Excitedly the students scanned the skies and seas and were lucky enough to spot dolphins one swimming close to the boat in the clear turquoise water.
On arrival the students were met by warden Mr. Samedi Uzice and the ICS(Island Conservation Society) staff and volunteers and they were all needed as the dinghy from Aride island transferred the visitors at top speed on to the beach. An incredible ride followed by an introduction to the island by the warden and an amazing hike up the rocky path to the clifftop viewpoint 300 feet above the northern shores of the island, where frigate birds, tropic birds, sooty terns, noddies and bridled terns whirled and swooped. On the tour the pupils were introduced to the white tern and tropic bird chicks as well as meeting three of the endangered landbird species , the Seychelles warbler, the Seychelles Magpie robin and the Seychelles fody.
We reluctantly left the island to have a splendid BBQ on board the catamaran. ‘Why do we have to leave such a beautiful place’ said Yan-luc as we circumnavigated Aride on our way back to Praslin. A wonderful day out!
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