JAMAICA'S GEOGRAPHICAL CONDITIONS
Jamaica has a warm tropical climate which can get rather humid, also in parts of the well known and published mountainous habitats. This can be the same for other mountain forests that are not spoken about. However, the elevation and time of year these areas are traversed, do make a difference. Although it is noticeably cooler island-wide in the winter months, the higher elevation areas especially in the Blue Mountains, usually have a cooler feeling year-round. This region of Jamaica embraces long hours of birding due to its cool temperature throughout the days.
Eastern Jamaica, hosts the highest mountain ranges on the island, especially the northeastern end of the island which hosts the Blue Mountain Peak which sours to a height of 2,256.13 m or 7,402 ft. It is also a fact that these parts host all the rare species; to include the Arrow-headed Warbler, Blue Mountain Vireo, Crested Quail-dove, Jamaican Blackbird, White-eyed Thrush, Ring-tailed Pigeon, Chestnut-bellied Cuckoos, Jamaican Lizard Cuckoo. Blessed with this luxury, these areas are more lush and cooler than all the other parts.
Although Jamaica's western and central mountains, are not as high as those in the eastern region, they also have numerous lush forests, plenty breeze and cool temperatures. These parts of the island are dominated by the impressive and almost impenetrable Cockpit Country which consist of wet limestone forests and beautiful birds. These areas are comprised of hundreds of little hills resembling inverted egg crotons. Although these are mainly woodland forests, traversing these areas are no treacherous; as they allow birders the opportunity to explore very easy, while watching birds.
However, the southern to southwestern areas tend to be warmer and dryer than the central, northern and northeastern parts of Jamaica. Although the northern and northeastern areas are cooler than the southern, do not be misled; as this region does go up to high and humid conditions. However, it does not get as high as those areas of the south and southwestern regions. All four seasons experienced worldwide, are also spoken about here. However, birding in Jamaica is possible just about any time of the year; being that the only seasons we experience are the wet season and the dry seasons, which allow rewarding birding, all year round.
Birding Excursions and Vacations
Have a look at our four (4) birding excursions or single day birding tours to major habitats in northern and eastern Jamaica.
Enjoy comfortable, clean and relaxing accommodation with second to none meals during any of our birding vacations or multi-day birding tours. Have closeup views of rare birds, sometimes almost at your arm's reach.
JAMAICA'S WEATHER PATERN AND BIRD SPECIES
Jamaica's dry season runs from December through April; while the wet season starts in May, through to the introduction of the hurricane season in June. During this time, a high level of rainfall is usually present. Between the months of June and September, Jamaicans and visitors to Jamaica must expect heat and humidity sometimes with rainfall, being that this time is the hurricane season and various tropical systems and rapid change in weather patterns usually appear during this time of year. October through mid November, the hurricane season says goodbye.
During this time, heavy rainfalls which Jamaicans refer to as bad weather, usually occur. With all the above said, Jamaica is the birding gem of the Caribbean. This blessed tropical paradise boasts sixty seven (67) resident land-bird species including twenty nine (29) endemic bird species, eighteen (18) endemic subspecies, plus another one hundred and eighty seven (187) migrant bird species which are present during the winter through spring periods. This averages over three hundred (300) species of birds which are recorded on the island.
Unfortunately the Jamaican Petrel and Jamaican Pauraque have not been recorded since shortly after the introduction of the mongoose in 1872. There is little hope that these species still exist. However, twenty nine (29) of these endemic birds are still remaining and can be reliably seen on any four to ten days birding vacation or multi-day tour. If you do not have enough time on this beautiful and blessed island to do any of our multi-day tours, take one of our single-day birding excursions or tours. One of our experienced birding guides will be happy to be with you.