An interesting article has been published on Oceanic Society website about the Out Islands of the Bahamas.
The Oceanic Society was founded in 1969 by a group of San Francisco Bay Area sailors and scientists who were concerned about the state of the oceans and decided to take action. Inspired by the events of their day—like the Santa Barbara oil spill of 1969, the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, and growing public concern for the environment—they came together to form Oceanic Society, the first non-profit organization in America dedicated to marine conservation. Their aim was to bring greater public awareness and political action to issues of ocean health and to grow the global community of people working toward improved ocean stewardship.
Here’s an extract from their blog post.
When people hear “Bahamas,” they often conjure images of bustling Nassau, Freeport, and Grand Bahamas where the only wild things are raucous hotels, bars, and restaurants. To find the truly natural wild areas, you’ll need to head to the “real Bahamas”—the less explored, less known, and less developed Out Islands of Acklins, Mayaguana, Long Island, Crooked Island, Eleuthera, and Conception Island National Park.
If these names don’t sound familiar, that’s the point! These pristine destinations offer untouched beaches, untamed mangroves, and undisturbed wildlife rarely seen by most Bahamas visitors. No other cruising vessels call at these remote, sparsely populated Out Islands, which serve as the frontier that divides the vast Atlantic from the subtropical waters of the Caribbean, farther to the west.
Eleuthera offers one of the ultimate experiences in the world to see an extensive variety of reef fish without diving. And without many other people around, you can simply float and let the prism of colorful tropical fish surround you. However, scuba diving in the deep waters of Eleuthera brings the opportunity to spot Nassau grouper. Once threatened by overfishing, the large—one to four feet long and weighing 10 to 20 pounds—fish are on the road to recovery, and keep protected by submerging to depths of up to 170 feet.
Around Eleuthera’s Turtle Lake, green sea turtles nest in protected waters before traveling through underground caverns to reach the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. At nearly three feet long and weighing up to 500 pounds, these surprisingly graceful giants can also be spotted around the aptly named Turtle Cove on Crooked Island and in the calm mangroves of Conception Island National Park.