Where to See & Photograph Iguanas, Mongoose, and Diving Pelicans
Iguanas, which look a bit like (maybe four-foot long) alligators with green and gray vertically striped tails may be encountered anywhere near water.
They look fearsome but are docile and will love you forever if you give them a bit of lettuce. The love to lay in the sun and often do so for hours. Look in streams next to roads -- particularly on the French side. After grabbing some salad greens, they sit and bask for as long as they like. We've also seen them walking on dawn beach . . . crossing main roads (usually not in crosswalks) . . . on the golf course . . . and near Simpson Bay lagoon. Look long enough and you're bound to find some.
Mongoose, which look a bit like fat, low-slung, road-hugging beige-to-rust-colored cats, are very shy and hide if they see you before you see them. We see a few each year, usually in less developed areas. Best place: along the "old," rakish part of Oyster Pond Road that crosses the big hill toward Dawn Beach Estates. Go early in the morning, drive slowly, and you may just see some venture into the road and stare at you for an instant before darting quickly back into the underbrush. Bring a fast camera and have someone else do the driving.
Diving Pelicans... head any afternoon onto the Beacon Hill peninsula. On your left before the far end, overlooking Simpson Bay, is an area where waves crash into the rocks... particularly late in the day, that's a favorite pelican haunt, as is the area near the jetty on the beach at Pelican Resort.
You'll also find Great Frigatebirds near the fish market beside the Simpson Bay drawbridge, looking for fish heads or other fish waste.... Frigatebirds are often seen soaring high over the lagoon and coastal waters.