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Birds in Paradise

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North & Middle Caicos, TCI, February 8, 2017 – Grab your binoculars for an Eco-adventure to the islands of North and Middle Caicos.  An archipelago of 40 islands and cays boasting the slogan, “Beautiful by Nature”, the Turks and Caicos is a dream come true for naturist. The two largest islands in the chain, North and Middle Caicos, are islands of abundant natural beauty. North and Middle Caicos have remained largely undeveloped, and retain a quiet, rural, village atmosphere.

On the northern coast, the islands feature a mixture of dramatic cliffs and caves interlaced by miles of stunningly beautiful and secluded beaches. In the heart of the islands, fertile soil gives birth to a lush vegetation of fruit trees, pine forests and farmland. To the south, one of the UK’s largest Ramsar sites for protected wetlands runs through a good portion of North, Middle and nearby East Caicos, resulting in approximately 210 square miles of uninhabited and unspoiled marine and terrestrial ecosystem, making these islands an Eco-adventurers paradise, with bird watching at its heart.

These areas host a variety of native and migrant bird species such as the rare whistling duck to sandpipers, plovers, osprey and pink flamingos.  In fact, North Caicos boasts the largest flock of flamingos in the Turks and Caicos Islands at the aptly named “Flamingo Pond Nature Reserve” where the pastel-colored birds frolic in their natural habitat.

Should you take a quick daytrip over to North and Middle Caicos via the TCI Ferry (only $50 round trip), be sure to take a binoculars and a camera to capture all the action. Whether you book a guided tour of the islands or rent a car and self-explore, here are a few stops recommended by Turks and Caicos National Museum for amazing bird finds:

North Caicos:

  • In Kew, the Government Farm is a good place for Anis, Cattle Egrets and migrants.
  • A walk in Oak Tree Park in the centre of Kew may reveal a variety of bird life, including warblers and Cuban Crows.
  • At Wades Green Plantation a number of land birds, including the Key West Quail-dove and migrating warblers can be seen.
  • At the eastern end of North Caicos, before the causeway to Middle Caicos, the road passes through an extensive marsh of low Red Mangrove bushes which offers good opportunities to see a variety of water birds, including White-cheeked Pintails.

Middle Caicos:

  • The Conch Bar Village Pond, part of the Conch Bar Caves Nature Reserve, attracts a family party of West Indian Whistling Ducks, a rare bird that gets its name from a distinctive whistling call.
  • Along the dramatic coast at Mudjin Harbour in Conch Bar, look out for Pelicans, Osprey, Kestrel and various scrub birds.
  • Bambarra Beach is another good place to see Pelicans
  • On a trip to Lorimers towards the residential end of Middle Caicos, you’ll come to Haulover Field Road which  passes through recovering tropical dry forest, and is a good place to spot the greater Antillean Bullfinch and Thick-billed Vireo endemic sub-species, as well as Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Bahama Woodstars, Bananaquits and other scrub birds.

Both North and Middle Caicos are the best also for spotting the Cuban Crow, a bird restricted to the Caicos Islands and Cuba, and the Bahama Woodstar, shared between Turks and Caicos and The Bahamas.

To assist your bird watching adventure while visiting the Turks and Caicos, grab a copy of the guide booklet, “Bird Watching in Paradise – Middle & North Caicos; Turks & Caicos Islands: A guide to bird watching and heritage sites”, with full color photographs of birds, maps and guiding text, can be purchased from the National Museum gift shop and other outlets on island. The guide series also features individual booklets for bird watching in Providenciales, South Caicos, Grand Turk and Salt Cay.

#MagneticMediaNews #BirdWatchingTCI #BeautifulbyNature

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Caribbean among regions lacking in HIV prevention, treatment says UNICEF

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

December 1, 2022 – The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) noted that over the past three years, no advancements have been made in HIV prevention and treatment, particularly in the Caribbean, which is among several other regions that still have not attained pre-pandemic statistics.

UNICEF Associate Chief of HIV/AIDS, Anurita Bains said many young people’s lives are at risk due to this stagnation. The number of young people living with HIV globally is now at 2.7 million.

“Children are falling through the cracks because we are collectively failing to find and test them and get them on life-saving treatment.  Every day that goes by without progress, over 300 children and adolescents lose their fight against AIDS,” the associate chief said.

UNICEF noted a decline in the number of children living with HIV over the last decade.  The number of new infections decreased by 52 per cent for children under 14 years old, and by 40 per cent for those ages 15 to 19.  The treatment gap between children and adults still widens and failure to address this will make ending AIDS in children and adolescents impossible.

According to UNICEF, only 52 per cent of children living with HIV globally are able to access treatment.  Pregnant and breastfeeding women in many high-priority countries experienced a decline in treatment coverage in 2020, which led to over 75,000 new child infections.

Bains gave assurance that strategic partnership, the availability of resources, and a renewed political commitment to those who are most vulnerable will help to end AIDS in children, pregnant women and adolescents.

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TCI Natl Security Bosses headed to The Bahamas

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

The  co-chairs of the Turks and Caicos’ National Security Council will be heading to The Bahamas in the coming days to meet with both their Bahamian counterparts and representatives from the United States in order to deepen their security collaboration.

Governor Nigel Dakin made the announcement on Tuesday on Instagram.

The delegation seems to be a fairly strong one with the top bosses to be accompanied by Senior Police, Regiment and National Security Secretariat officials.

The visit comes as a five nation coalition which also includes the UK and Jamaica, works to keep crime under control in the Turks and Caicos.

In addition to that Dakin revealed updated specs for the country’s patrol boats. The Marine branch of the Royal TCI Police is now outfitted with thermal imaging and radar capacity.

The governor touted the new capabilities as a major refit that swings the advantage in the direction of the TCI.

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Canadian man charged with planning to overthrow Haitian Government

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By Sherrica Thompson

Staff Writer

 

#Canada, November 22, 2022 – The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, on November 17, announced that a Canadian man, Gérald Nicolas, has been charged with terrorism for planning a terrorist act to overthrow the Haitian government of Jovenel Moïse.

The fifty-one-year-old is set to appear at the Québec courthouse on December 1st to face three terrorism-related charges under the Canadian Criminal Code.  The charges are leaving Canada to facilitate terrorist activity, facilitating terrorist activity and providing property for terrorist purposes.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said the investigation began in July 2021, and it is unrelated to the assassination of Jovenel Moïse.

According to reports by the police, Nicolas planned to stage an armed revolution in Haiti and ultimately seize power.

“It is alleged that he took concrete actions, including travelling to Haiti to coordinate a group of individuals whose intention was to take part in a coup against the established authority,” the police said.

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