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FARQUHAR


Comprising the islands of Farquhar, Providence and St. Pierre, Farquhar Atoll lies 770 km south south west of Victoria, covering an area of about 17,800 hectares. The atoll comprises of 10 islands. Two main islands are North and south island, these are separated by 3 small islands called the Manahas. There is no accommodation on any islands of the Farquhar group.

Farquhar island was given its name in honour of the first british governor of Mauritius, Sir Robert Townsend Farquhar. The islets of Farquhar (excluding North, South and the Manahas) are designated as important Bird Areas. A Seasonal colony of about 200,000 - 400,000 pairs of sooty terns come to nest on the islands. Farquhar is also an important nesting ground for turtles. Other species of interest include the gold-dust gecko and the coconut crab.

 Named after a ship that visited the island on 6th June 1732, St Pierre is a roughly circular raised coral island. During high tide, there are no beaches at St. Pierre and this makes boat landings difficult. Over exploitation of guano mining on the island has left it an ecological desert, however hope remains that conservation efforts might return the island to its former glory.

The island of Providence was given its name because of the salvation it gave the crew of a ship that wrecked on the island in 1763. The islands bounty allowed them to survive until they were rescued. Providence was run as a copra island until 2006 when Cyclone Bondo devastated most of the buildings and coconut trees.

Though tourism has not been developed on the island, it often hosts visitors who come to its waters for the rich fishing experience. The island attracts the largest population of grey heron in Seychelles.

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