Bay of Pigs (Bahia de Cochinos), Cuba

Dec 10, 2017 - Harmony V

The Bay of Pigs offers everything from history to natural history, and an amazing cultural experience mixed in as well. Many of us started with an early morning hike around Zapata National Park with local guides admiring many of the endemic and native birds of Cuba. We found the West Indian woodpecker (Melanerpes superciliaris), the Cuban trogon (Priotelus temnurus), the Cuban tody (Todus multicolor), the Cuban emerald hummingbird (Chlorostilbon ricordii), and several others. Afterwards, we visited a tree that offered amazing views of the world’s smallest bird, the bee hummingbird (Mellisuga helenae).

For those who were more interested in learning more of the marine environment, we took a group to enjoy the underwater ecosystem of Punta Perzdiz. We also visited the Bay of Pigs museum, and received a very thorough chronology of the revolution and Bay of Pigs attack by American military. After a walk through town and seeing more of local life, we had lunch at Tiki Restaurant overlooking the bay in Playa Larga.

After lunch, we enjoyed a fascinating presentation by the head ornithologist of the Zapata National Park who related both the grandeur and challenges of the park. We followed the presentation with a visit to Korimakao Community Project which offers alternative careers for artists, dancers, and musicians. They shared with us their experiences and aspirations, as well as inspirational performances. 

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About the Author

Jeff Litton

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Jeff is an environmental filmmaker and adventure cinematographer. His passion for adventure has led him through rural Kenyan villages, atop erupting Guatemalan volcanoes and to the enchanted Galápagos Islands to film Hammerhead Sharks. Being an expedition filmmaker enables Jeff to combine his love for capturing beauty with his drive to protect the environment. In the words of Jacques Cousteau, “people protect what they love.” Inspired, Jeff created, the United Global Environmental News Agency, an online resource to inspire people to care about the environment.

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