The Main Ridge in Tobago forms the “backbone” of the northeastern half of the island. There is no well defined peak but the highest points are 549 m near the mid point of the ridge and 541m at Pigeon Peak near the northern end. One main road crosses the ridge but there is no habitation. The Main Ridge has been formally protected since 1765 by the designation of the Main Ridge Forest Reserve. The reserve is surrounded by forested or agricultural lands, many of which have been abandoned and have reverted to secondary forest.
The Main Ridge provides habitat for four restricted range species three of which are endemic subspecies. These include the White-tailed Sabrewing, Venezuelan Flycatcher, The Main Ridge provides habitat for four restricted range species three of which are endemic subspecies. These include the White-tailed Sabrewing, Venezuelan Flycatcher, Rufous-vented Chachalaca and Copper-rumped Hummingbird. The ridge also provided habitat for a further 17 endemic sub-species. The Tobago populations of White-tailed Sabrewing and Blue-Backed Manakins were thought to have been exterminated by hurricane Flora in 1963. Populations have now recovered and displaying Blue-backed Manakins are one of the main attractions to visitors to the forests of Tobago.
Non-bird biodiversity: While Tobago has not been particularly isolated a number of endemic forms have been recognized. The frogs Manophryne olmonae, and Eleutherodactylus charlotvillensis are limited to Tobago. Eleutherodactylus urichi is limited to Trinidad and Tobago, and the Tobago populations of Hyalinobatrachium orientale are considered to be the subspecies H.o. tobagoensis. Among the lizards, the Ocellated Gecko Gonatodes ocellatus is a Tobago endemic as is the subspecies of Bachia heteropa, B.h. alleni . One endemic snake species Erythrolamprus ocellatus, and two subspecies Liophis reginae ssp. and Mastigodryas boddaerti dunni are currently only known from Tobago. There are 16 endemic plants listed from Tobago, most of which are likely to occur within the boundary of the Main Ridge Forest Reserve.
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Main Ridge, Tobago. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 07/07/2020.