Giant Tortoise Curieuse Island Seychelles - 0972
As it's name suggests, the Aldabra Giant Tortoise originates from Aldabra, an atoll in the Outer Islands of Seychelles, that is declared Unesco World Heritage, because of it's unique flora and fauna. Once these giant ancient creatures were present on all islands but when men discovered this hidden paradise the population of giant tortoises decreased quickly. They are not very quick so were easy to hunt down and eat. These days some islands have giant tortoises roaming free again, like here on Curieuse.
Fairy Tern chick Denis Island Seychelles - 5603
Fairy Terns are one of Seychelles national symbols, the snow-white angelic birds with their typical long beaks can be spotted all over the islands, almost always in couples, as they mate for life. They don't make nests but simply lay their eggs on a branch. When the chick hatches it keeps sitting on that same branch for a few more months, waiting for the parents to bring them some fish. Their feet are specifically adapted to hold on tight to the branch. I spotted this cutie on a low branch right next to the Hotel Resort on Denis Island. He didn't seem impressed by me at all.
Mudskipper amphybia Seychelles - 6973
Mudskippers are very strange creatures. They look a bit prehistorical, like the missing link when creatures from the sea crawled on land and turned into dinosaurs.
Palm Spider Seychelles - 6170
The huge Palm Spiders look very scary but are completely harmless. They weave their webs between palm leaves or electricity wires. The biggest 'discomfort' these spiders may cause is if you by accident run into one of their webs because they are incredibly strong and sticky.
Female Paradise Flycatcher Denis Island Seychelles - 5744
The Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher is endemic to the Seychelles Islands, meaning it appears nowhere else in the world. The females look very different than the males, which are dark blue and have a beautiful long tail. I shot this female on Denis Island, where they re-introduced the Paradise Flycatcher from La Digue, as part of a program to try to increase the population.
Fairy Tern chick Denis Island Seychelles - 5552
The cute Fairy Tern chicks gradually loose their grey fluffy dawn as they grow older and change it for spotless white feathers. This chick is a few weeks old.
Madagascar Fody Flowers Denis Island Seychelles - 5496
Seychelles has a number of endemic birds, birds that appear nowhere else in the world than on these islands. This one is a Madagascar Fody, so not endemic but it resembles it's cousin, the Seychelles Fody a lot. These small birds are omnivorous and they are very cheecky. They might steal the food right of your mouth if you're not careful.
Flying Fairy Terns - 5450
The beautiful white Fairy terns can almost always be spotted in pairs. They fly out to hunt for fish, or just for fun.
Redfooted Boobie chick beach Farquhar - 3938
A not so small Red Footed Boobie chick on Farquhar. This one was sitting on the beach instead of in it's nest. He can't fly yet but the parents are still feeding it.
Angelic White Fairy Tern - 5427
When you see them fly you understand where the Fairy Terns get their name from. This one I shot on the airstrip on Denis Island where there's a huge amount of them.
Orange flowers Reunion - 9475
Lonely orange Lantana flower amongst thousands of white mountain flowers along the hiking trail to the view point of Bras Long, near Entre-Deux in the south of Reunion
Magpie Robin sunlight Aride Island - 3656
The rare endemic Magpie Robin catching the sunlight on Aride Island. A while ago this bird was one of the rarest birds in the world with only a few specimens left. But thanks to an intensive rehabilitation program where the birds where translocated to a number of ratfree islands in Seychelles, it's population has increased drastically.
Juvenile Redfooted Boobie flying - 5094
A juvenile Redfooted Booby caught in flight in perfect symmetry on Farquhar South Island
Hermite Crab sunset beach Seychelles - 4583
Hermit Crabs can change their house as they grow. It's quite funny to observe them fighting over a good new shell sometimes, very 'humanesque'. When the sun sets and the night falls they become very active
Whitetail tropic bird flying - 3881
The very elegant Whitetail Tropic Bird in flight on Aride Island, displaying his black upper feathers. There exists also a Redtail Tropic Bird with a red tail instead of a white and a lot bigger than the Whitetail but it's very rare.
Curious Redfooted Boobie Farquhar Island - 4539
In this picture you can see where the Redfooted Booby get it's name from, well part of it's name at least. The creole name for the bird is 'Fou', meaning 'crazy', and when you see this guy's face you can understand where that comes from too. They are very curious birds, not shy at all, but maybe that's because they are lucky (or wise) enough to not have been around humans that much.
Endemic flower wrights gardenia Aride island - 4514
The Wright's Gardenia or 'Bois Citron' in Creole, is one of the many endemic plants of Seychelles. They only where found naturally on Aride Island, but have been planted on a number of other islands where they are doing very well. The beautiful flowers have a delicious smell and only appear after a few days of heavy rainfall.
Redfooted Boobie Farquhar Atoll - 4347
In this picture you can clearly see the Redfooted Boobies red feet. It was taken on South Island of the Farquhar Atoll, one the outer Islands of Seychelles.
Endemic Frog Silhouette Island Seychelles - 6366
Silhouette Island has a slightly different geological background than the rest of the granitic Islands of Seychelles. It's volcanic so while the other islands where formed when Gondwana split up, Silhouette and it's smaller neighbour North Island were formed later due to volcanic activity. As a result Silhouette still has a very different flora and fauna. It's what scientists call a 'biological hotspot' with a number of species that only appear here. Like this frog for instance, the tiny Sooglossid Frog.
Madagascar Fody Flowers Denis Island Seychelles - 5483
The female Madagascar Fody doesn't look very special, but the males are bright red.
Redfooted Boobie flying Farquhar Atoll - 4305
A Red Footed Boobie preparing for landing. Like other seabirds with webbed feet it's not easy for them to land in trees but thanks to their excellent flying skills they manage to pull it of time after time
Female chameleon Reunion - 9856
Unlike the males of this species, the female chameleon can not change color to adapt to it's environment. But still they are amazing prehistorical looking creatures
Redfooted Boobie flying Farquhar Atoll - 4288
the amazing aerodynamics of the Red Footed Boobie
Fruitbat Flying Fox Seychelles - 7306
One of the only mammals native to Seychelles is the amazing Flying Fox, or Fruit Bat. It's a huge bat with a face that resembles a fox that feeds on rotten fruit. They are not nocturnal so you can see them all day round, though they become more active towards sundown, often making a lot of noise while fighting over food. This shot was taken on Silhouette.
Juvenile Redfooted Boobie Farquhar Atoll - 4243
The juvenile Red Footed Boobies can be easily recognised as their feathers are brown instead of black and white, although there is a morph that keeps it's brown feather throughout adulthood. This one was captured on the Farquhar Atoll in the Outer Islands of Seychelles.
Big Skink Aride Island Seychelles - 4087
The Big Skink is a reptile endemic to Seychelles. Aride Island has one of the highest densities of reptiles in the world and also these Big Skinks are everywhere. They are very cheeky and steel the food right from under your nose.
Redfooted Boobie chick Farquhar Atoll - 4004
A Red Footed Boobie chick still covered in dawn, waiting for it's parents to return from the sea with some tasty fish, on South Island in the Farquhar Atoll.
Whitetail tropic bird chick Aride - 3966
A Whitetail Tropic Bird Baby Bird of a couple of weeks old on Aride Island. The Whitetail Tropic Birds make their nests on the ground here, because there are no rats or other predators on the island. And when the chick has hatched it's just sitting there on the ground, while the parents are out fishing.
Whitetail tropic bird flight - 3908
The very elegant Whitetail Tropic Bird in flight on Aride Island
Fody bird filming Aride Island Seychelles - 3507
An endemic Seychelles Fody assisting me while filming for ICS on Aride Island
Flower Wrights gardenia Aride Island - 3570
The beautiful and gorgeous smelling flowers of the Wright's Gardenia or Bois Citron, one of the many endemic plants of Seychelles
Magpie Robin Aride Island Seychelles - 3459
The endemic Seychelles Magpie Robin giving me the look on Aride Island. The Magpie Robins are very smart and social birds, what makes them perfect models. In this one you can see that besides the obvious black and white in it's feathers there is also some dark blue
Bronzed Eye Gecko Vallee de Mai Praslin - 1255
Seaturtle underwater Reunion - 0369
Green Praying Mantus Seychelles - 6017
We regularly had a big Green Praying Mantus visiting on our veranda in Seychelles. They looked rather curious at us.
Wild red Papaver flower - 8256
A wild red Poppy flower along the road in Maillen in the Belgian Ardennes. Early summer these beautiful flowers can be spotted everywhere.
Seychelles Sheath tailed Bat critically endangered - 6509
The Seychelles Sheath Tailed Bat is a so called Edge Species, a species that developed unique genetic characteristics, different from any other species from the same family. In Seychelles there exist several of these edge species because it was isolated from the rest of the world for such a long time. It's very important for global biodiversity to safe these edge species from extinction
Seychelles Sheath tailed Bat cave Silhouette - 6515
The Seychelles Sheath Tailed Bat is one of the rarest mammals in the world, there are only between 60 to 100 individuals left, all living in 5 roosts on 2 islands in Seychelles, Mahe and Silhouette. I had the opportunity to go into one of the caves to take this picture, a very delicate mission because the bats are extremely easily disturbed.
Seychelles Fruit Bat Flying Fox - 6836
The Seychelles Fruit Bat or Flying Fox is an amazing creature, they have a huge wingspan and are not nocturnal, like insectivorous bats.