Martinique is an island in the eastern Caribbean Sea, north of Trinidad and Tobago, having a land area of 1,128 km². It is an overseas department of France. To the northwest lies Dominica, to the south St Lucia. As with the other overseas departments, Martinique is also one of the twenty-six regions of France (being an overseas region) and an integral part of the Republic. As part of France, Martinique is part of the European Union, and its currency is the euro. Its official language is French, although almost all of its inhabitants also speak Antillean Creole (Créole Martiniquais).
The Climate is tropical; moderated by trade winds; rainy season (June to October); vulnerable to devastating cyclones (hurricanes) every eight years on average; average temperature 17.3 degrees Celsius; humid
The terrain is mountainous with indented coastline; as it is a dormant volcano.
The north of the island is mountainous and lushly forested. It features 4 ensembles of dramatic pitons and mornes: the Piton Conil on the extreme North, which dominates the Dominica Channel, the Mount Pelee, an active volcano, the Morne Jacob, and the Pitons du Carbet, an ensemble of 5 beautifully shaped, rainforest covered extinct volcanoes dominating the Bay of Fort de France at 1,196 meters. The most dominating of the island's many beautiful mountains, with 1397 meters, is the infamous volcano Mount Pelée. The volcanic ash has created beautiful grey and black sand beaches in the north (in particular between Anse Ceron and Anse des Gallets), contrasting markedly from the white sands of Les Salines in the south.
The south is more easily traversed, though it still features some impressive geographic features. Because it is easier to travel and because of the many beautiful beaches and food throughout this region, the south receives the bulk of the tourist traffic. The beaches from Pointe de Bout, through Diamant (which features right off the coast the beautiful Roche de Diamant), St. Luce, the town of St. Anne all the way down to Les Salines are very popular.
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Number of Species
Number of bird species: 208
(As at September 2018)
Number of endemics: 1
Martinique Oriole Icterus bonana
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Birds of the West Indies
By G Michael Flieg & Allan Sander | Bloomsbury Publishing | 2017 | Paperback | 144 pages, colour photos, 1 colour map |
ISBN: 9781472938145Buy this book from NHBS.com
The Birds of the West Indies
By Herbert Raffaele, James Wiley, Orlando Garrido, Allan Keith & Janis Raffaele | Christopher Helm | 2003 | Paperback | 216 pages, 92 colour plates, 181 colour distribution maps |
ISBN: 0713654198Buy this book from NHBS.com
NR La Caravelle
Nature Reserve of La Caravelle lies toward the center of the island of Martinique, 5.6 miles north-northeast of Le Robert; it's six miles (nine and a half kilometers) to the east-southeast of Sainte Marie. It is comprised of grassy savannas, dry forests, cliffs, beaches, forests, and mangrove thickets, offering a great representation of the different habitats throughout Martinique.
CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.
2016 [02 February] - David Ascanio
Our treasure wasn’t gold, nor sugar. It was every one of the endemic or the restricted distribution birds. It seemed as if every island offered a unique challenge to finding these treasures. Barbados was the easy task. In Dominica and Martinique we practiced patience...
2017 [06 June] - Mark Van Beirs
Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Santa Lucia, Saint Vincent, Barbados and Grenada were the ten islands we visited on our recent Lesser Antilles tour. Some are independent countries in their own right, while others are Overseas Territories. All these islands exude a quite different flavour, as some are rich and well developed and some are obviously quite poor with pothole-riddled roads and limited infrastructure.
2018 [03 March] - Victor Emanuel
From the first day in Barbados to the last day in St Vincent, our cruise to the Lesser Antilles aboard the Sea Cloud was one of the best trips that VENT has ever operated for the Lab. Blending birding and natural history with doses of history and culture, we visited six islands (Barbados, Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines), each characterized by unique history, ambience, and, of course, endemic birds.
Places to Stay
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Martinique Oriole Icterus bonana
This species qualifies as Vulnerable as it has a very small range and is declining in response to brood-parasitism. Monitoring and assessment of the precise impact of this threat may ultimately result in a revised evaluation of the species's conservation status…