Fish Ponds and Crossing Place Trail, Middle Caicos

Country/territory: Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK)

IBA Criteria met: A1, A2, B4i, B4ii (2007)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 1,024 ha

Site description
Western part of the northern coast of Middle Caicos, including Fish Ponds, Crossing Place Trail, Indian Cave and Blowing & Juniper Holes. Limestone cliffs, with small offshore cays, slope inland to ponds, which are connected to the sea under the cliffs. There are several sea-caves, and a dry inland cave within the site, Indian Cave.

Key biodiversity
Several restricted-range and biome-restricted species occur, including the Antillean Nighthawk, Bahama Woodstar and Bahama Mockingbird.The offshore cays are one of the few sites in TCI where there are reports of breeding Audubon's Shearwaters and numbers are probably of regional importance. There are several other species of regional importance in relation to the Caribbean population: breeding White-tailed Tropic-birds (50 breeding pairs), Greater Flamingos (500 individuals), Laughing Gulls (150 individuals), Gull-billed Terns (50 individuals), Royal Terns (120 individuals), Sandwich Terns (50 individuals), and Least Terns (50 individuals). There are also small numbers of migrant Sandhill Cranes.

Non-bird biodiversity: Crossing Place Trail is the traditional route along the Caicos Islands, in particular the Middle Caicos section. As such, it is of great cultural importance. The trail is also of great scenic value, and along its route are important sites for wildlife, including specialist plants and butterflies, including the endemic Drury's hairstreak butterfly Strymon acis leucostricha. Fish Ponds comprise some of the most important wetlands in the area not included within the Ramsar site. The area is rich in fish and invertebrate life.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Fish Ponds and Crossing Place Trail, Middle Caicos. Downloaded from on 01/10/2022.