The Outer Islands of Seychelles are renowned for their rich biodiversity and this includes a plethora of plumed species. Over 250 different species of birds have been recorded.
Blue Safari Seychelles has teamed up with the Island Conservation Society (ICS) to develop a series of ecotourism trips around our destinations that are geared towards birders to conserve the habitats that birds need most.
The BS bird-based tourism work focuses on key areas along the flyways that are important for resident and migratory species alike.
Initial sites are located in Alphonse, St. François, Astove, Cosmoledo and Poivre, all of which are both bird hotspots and key Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs), where BS and their partners at ICS are carrying out vital conservation work.
The expansive flats, coconut and mangrove forests, as well as protected lagoons are home and nesting grounds to this vast variety of birds.
Each of the Blue Safari atolls has its own character and bird watching experience. The stoll of Cosmoledo is home to five land-bird nesting species, namely the Souimanga Sunbird, Madagascar Turtle Dove, Madagascar White-eye, Madagascar Cisticola and Pied Crow. The first three of these birds are endemic species.
Guests will be able to spot species like Red-footed Boobies, Frigatebirds, various terns and noddies.
The Outer Islands of Seychelles holds unique biological treasures that deserve to be preserved for future generations.
The combination of restoration by eradicating invasive species such as rats and cats and further habitat protection has led the numbers of birds to thrive. Their numbers have been further assisted by the combination of ideal habitats formed by the islands paired with the protection now afforded to them.
The species found here include large flocks and significant breeding populations of Frigatebirds, terns, boobies, and an array of migratory birds.
The birding highlights of the Outer Islands include species such as Brown, Masked and Red Footed Booby, Crab Plover, Sooty Tern and Aldabran Rail.
Guests to our island destinations can choose to accompany the Island Conservation Team on their excursions to the various islands as they survey and monitor the different species found here. During the selection of activities on offer, be sure to keep an eye out for some of these feathered creatures nesting in the forests, strutting on the golden beaches or soaring up above.
Our destinations are not only home to beautiful vistas and sun-kissed beaches, but a large congregation of bird species, some of which are unique to this region.
Visit our different islands for a closer look at these feathered beauties.
The islands of the Alphonse Atoll i.e. Alphonse, St. François and Bijoutier, host large populations of migratory waders and breeding seabirds. St. François also holds a healthy and significant population of Crab Plover.Discover Alphonse Island
Astove Atoll plays host to populations of migratory waders and breeding seabirds like Crab Plovers and Caspian Terns. The beautiful atoll with its single entrance lagoon and stunning flats is also home to an array of endemic species like the Cisticola and White-eye.Discover Astove Atoll
Cosmoledo Atoll with its diverse habitats of Mangrove Forests, reefs, cliffs and expansive flats along with its large lagoon offers an ideal haven for a wide variety of birds. Cosmoledo is home to ground-nesting birds like the Masked Booby and Sooty Terns as well as other breeding birds like Fairy Terns, Dimorphic Egret and Brown Noddy. It is also home to a regionally significant population of breeding Red-footed Booby.Discover Cosmoledo Atoll
The two islands that make up Poivre Atoll i.e. Poivre Island and Île du Sud, create a great home for a variety of birds with their extensive reefs and surrounding flats. The island plays host to thriving populations of Grey Heron, Fairy Terns, Ruddy Turnstones and Whimbrels.Discover Poivre Atoll
These beautiful Blue Safari atolls host an incredible diversity of bird species, some of which are endemic to the region. Whilst some unique populations are found on multiple islands, there are some species which are endemic to only one specific island.
The islands of St. François, Astove, Cosmoledo and Aldabra have populations of Crab Plover which is unique to the western Indian Ocean. The atolls of Cosmoledo and Astove hold healthy populations of Sunbird, White-eye, Cisticola and Turtle Dove. Forming part of the incredible array of over 250 bird species found in the region, these endemic species are very special and add to the rich biodiversity of these islands.
Bird watching in the Seychelles, especially the Outer Islands, is a truly wonderful experience that will excite and inspire.
During the non-breeding season the island of St. François along with Cosmoledo and Aldabra Atolls have been known to play host to almost 10% of the world’s Crab Plover populations, as well as various other species. Although many species can be found here throughout the year, there are also a large number of migratory species that use these islands for overwintering breeding grounds or a stopover as they travel to other regions.
Annual migrant birds of the Outer Islands include Ruddy Turnstone, Whimbrel, Greater and Lesser Sand Plover, Grey Plover, Crab Plover, Common Ringed Plover, Curlew Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Sanderling, Bar-tailed Godwit, Eurasian Curlew, Barn Swallow and Common Greenshank.Vagrant birds have included species such as Common Cuckoo, Broad-billed Roller, European and Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Sandmartin, Northern Wheatear, Willow Warbler, Collared and Black-winged Pratincole, Elenora’s Falcon and Eurasian Hobby.
Following the birdwatchers' code is good practice, common sense and should enable all of us to enjoy spotting birds.
1. Avoid disturbing birds and their habitats
2. Be an ambassador for birdwatching. Avoid going too close to birds or disturbing their habitats. If a bird flies away or makes repeated alarm calls, you’re too close. And if it leaves, you will not get a good view.
3. Birds, habitats & the law! Follow your guide at all times as he knows the law, the rules and the terrain.
4. Keeping records! Share your sightings with the ICS Conservation Team and record/make a list of your exciting sightings.
5. Think about the interests of wildlife and local people before passing on news of a rare bird, especially during the breeding season.
6. Birds respond to people in many ways, depending on the species, location and time of year.
7. Disturbance can keep birds from their nests, leaving chicks hungry or enabling predators to take eggs or young.
Experience all that the Outer Islands of the Seychelles have to offer. Immerse yourself in an untouched paradise with a rich biodiversity of fauna and flora.