Wildlife in Mauritius

Written by Nisha Jha

Around eight million years ago an earth-shattering explosion happened. The bed of the Indian Ocean ruptured, and basalt was thrown into the sky. After the calm, an enthralling new world emerged. Unusual plants and fantastic creatures made their way but not for long.

When the Dutch first settled here, they thought they’d found the Garden of Eden. They started enjoying its flourishing forest and the fauna. Some say the unhindered killing and deforestation was the beginning of the end of several species of animals and plants.

Nonetheless, Mauritius has its own share of wildlife, albeit a relatively low diverse. Due to its isolation from large land masses, Mauritius initially had no terrestrial mammals. The only mammals that could make their way to the island are bats and marine mammals. A high proportion of these widespread species which are seen nowhere else in the world. Some of it are near extinct and Dodo, its national bird, has already become so. Eventually several species of mammals were introduced in the island later when seafaring was the order of the day.

Like many of us, I always thought beaches made Mauritius beautiful but I was so wrong!

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