Wildlife in Mauritius

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.

wildlife mauritius at lemonicks

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!

For animal and bird lovers, it’s a great opportunity to learn more about the lives of the giant tortoises, crocodiles, rare Pink Pigeon, Echo Parakeet, and other endangered animals. You can do so in Crocodile & Giant Tortoises Park, Ile Aux Aigrettes Island and other various Nature Reserves. The giant tortoises were brought here from the Seychelles, to help spread seeds.

You can say hello to lions, Caracals, Tigers, Zebras, Ostriches, Deer, African Antelopes, White Rhinoceros, Impalas, Kudus, Camels, Mauritius Kestrel and many more.

Red beaked ‘Pink pigeon’ is almost on the brink of extinction. By 1990, there were only nine of them left. Although its numbers are slowly recovering, it’s still one of the rarest birds in the world.
There are various animal discovery expeditions which are part of the many Safari & Wildlife activities. Mauritius Attractions offers you several interesting day packages depending on your preference.

Conservation and preservation work of the nation’s endangered plant and animal species work in Mauritius is carried out by the National Parks and Conservation Service (NPCS) and by non-governmental organizations such as Mauritian Wildlife Foundation (MWF) and Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust (DWCT). Efforts to preserve native flora and fauna includes captive breeding, habitat restoration and the eradication of introduced species.

Protection also involves three National Parks, Nature Reserves, and a range of other protected areas, and botanical gardens for education and public outreach.

Have you thought of Mauritius as wildlife rich?

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41 thoughts on “Wildlife in Mauritius

  1. To tell you the truth I have known Mauritius for its beaches, I had no idea it had such a diverse wildlife. More reasons to visit for me.

  2. Wohoo!

    This is altogether a different thing . I never expected Mauritius to have such great wildlife. You have shown a different Mauritius.
    My husband is a huge fan of wildlife. When we go there , we’ll make sure to go for safaris.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. What an interesting read, It’s good to know there is so much more to see in Mauritius beyond the beaches. Love the pictures you’ve taken, it looks like you were able to get pretty close. This is definitively another reason to consider visiting Mauritius!!

  4. Oh you are so right. I belonged to the same tribe who thought Mauritius was all about gorgeous beaches. Until now. Great to find so many animals there! Hope the conservation helps these thrive for long.

  5. Like the Dutch, I’d also think I discovered the Garden of Eden. What a great place for wildlife, fostering growth like for the red beaked ‘Pink pigeon’. I can’t believe there were only 9… so close to extinction!

  6. Mauritius has been on my list for so long. This just adds to my desire to go there. I can’t imagine a destination that has more to offer, with such a rich diverse wildlife and spectacular scenery.

  7. It’s sad to me that some species have gone extinct and that others are so close to extinction. I hope that the wildlife continues to prosper, as it is what makes Mauritius so unique.

  8. Wow! These are some great photos of all the animals in Mauritius! I especially loved the one of the tortoise. You have to wonder just how old he was to be that big!

  9. You are right Nisha ji ! I know Mauritious as the best place for beaches but now another face , beautiful face is here of this beautiful place.

  10. Very insightful post on the wildlife of the island which otherwise is known for its beaches. Hope the numbers of pink pigeon increase in coming years…

  11. What a fab post! I love the pictures of the animals, especially the giraffe! What a cutie! I’d never thought of visiting here before so thanks for the inspiration.

  12. Wow loved reading this post! When we think of Mauritius the first thing that comes to mind is the wonderful beaches. But this post has made us realize that there is much more to this lovely place. We love wildlife and you have captured it so well. This is one more reason for us to visit Mauritius!

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