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#279930 - 05/10/08 03:02 PM crocodiles and such
birder Offline
My husband and I were recently in Ambergris and Caye Caulker and were so taken with the islands we are thinking of purchasing property. We preferred Caulker but there seemed to be more choice on Ambergris.

Anyway I read there are crocodiles in the ocean around Caulker but they aren't dangerous. We lived in Africa for several years. I had a run-in with a crocodile but was very lucky. Several villagers in our area were not so lucky. My experience of crocodiles is that they are shockingly fast and very aggressive. So what is the truth about the Caulker crocs?

My second question is about spiders. A realtor told us there are no large spiders on the island. In addition to Africa we've spent many years in Asia so I'm resigned to large furry eight-legged house guests but I don't like them and if the islands really don't have them, this is actually a huge selling point for me. Is Caulker a tarantula-free zone?

We heard sandflies and mosquitoes were more voracious on Caulker than anywhere else in Belize. We didn't get a single bite while we were there and did get feasted upon other places. I assume this was because there was a good breeze on Caulker. So what is the deal on the ravenous insects. Is Caulker usually worse than the mainland or Ambergris?

Finally we had been warned there were aggressive touts on Caulker pushing everything from hotels to souvenirs. We didn't get hassled once. Is this also a seasonal problem? Is it irritating even when you live there?

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#279932 - 05/10/08 04:03 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: birder]
elbert Offline
Birder,
You got me smiling early this morning, Thanks for that.
Don't worry about the crocks its not at all like Africa the crocks seem to stay in the lagoon and it isn't a problem.
as for the rest, well....I had a real estate agent tell me there are no mosquitoes when I first came to the island. :-)
all and all this is a wonderful place with lots of happy folks There has always been a snake in every story about paradise from the beginning of the world.
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#279935 - 05/10/08 05:33 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: elbert]
Phil Offline
American Saltwater Crocodiles are not as aggressive as their cousins in Africa and Australia, but respect is still due as these are large, top of the food chain predators. They do tend to keep to the Cayes internal lagoons and shy away from people - and you would not choose to swim in the lagoons even if there weren't crocs, so no real issue. Sightings on the beach on the East coast are not common, certainly in populated areas, but do happen on occassion. There are Tarantulas and Scorpions but I live in town I have only seen them out of town where their natural habitat is more intact. That said I saw one once in Placencia on the boardwalk where some kids tempted it out of it's hole, so perhaps they're around and I have just missed them. Someone with little boys can respond - they will know for sure!!!!

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#279943 - 05/10/08 09:35 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: Phil]
birder Offline
Thank you both for your honest replies. I thought it was too good to be true about the tarantulas. Darn it, I thought I really had found paradise!

Good news about the crocodiles though. I generally like reptiles but I will give the crocs wide berth if I see any.


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#279950 - 05/11/08 01:13 AM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: birder]
Amanda Syme Offline
okay, how often do you'll actually see tarantulas? I see maybe 3 a year. Usually on the road. Occassionally at the house.

My neighbours can tell when we spot one, all the yelling and running around like fools is a dead giveaway. Of course we have to catch them and let them loose... yes on the road!

I haven't seen a scorpion in probably over a year.

If you want to live in a more natural area - less built up and more bushes and trees then you will experience more bugs. This is why I don't live on the mainland. I don't like buggies either.

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#279956 - 05/11/08 01:55 AM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: Amanda Syme]
Cooper Offline
I have never seen a tarantula on Caye Caulker ,in 8 years..nor has anyone I have spoken to.. San Pedro is larger,,more fruit coming in from mainland so more critters., they also have more crocs.this last year has been pretty much mosquito free..very unusual as they tend to come and go with the rain..they just seem to have left. never seen a scorpion here,,did nice a nice 4 inch centipede about 2 years ago, then there is slim..our 5 ft Boa that lives in the leaf compose in our yard.
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#279983 - 05/11/08 02:50 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: Cooper]
birder Offline
So Amanda sees three tarantulas a year, usually on the road, but occasionally in her house, which she then releases on the road. And Cooper sees none in eight years. Interesting.

Amanda, the next time you see a tarantula I think you should put him on the ferry to Ambergris. That may just solve the tarantula problem on Caulker. smile


Edited by birder (05/11/08 02:51 PM)

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#279988 - 05/11/08 03:36 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: birder]
gailtor Offline
Birder.. you have it backwards. Amanda is on AC and Cooper is on CC. Looks like you will be 'safe' if you are planning on CC.
smile
Best of luck in your planning and successful move.
Gail cool

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#279991 - 05/11/08 04:23 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: gailtor]
elbert Offline
Brachypelma vagans (Mexican Red-Rump Tarantula)
Cooper, I'm sure they are native to Ambergris but very susceptible to malathion. raccoons eat them, one of their main predators and probably why they see so well and can move so quickly .
They see very well (long distances) and move quickly out of sight , live about 20 years and usually if undisturbed will live generation after generation in the same hole.
I'm sure you could live your whole life on Ambergris and not see one if you live in or around town, but i'm kinda 'backabush' and see them regularly.
I used to think they where creepy until i found out how intelligent they are.
still won't let one crawl on me but I don't kill them and i promise not to buy any of them a water taxi token to Caye Caulker.
Oh almost forgot: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1SqRUX05Us



Edited by elbert (05/11/08 04:33 PM)
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#279997 - 05/11/08 05:29 PM Re: crocodiles and such [Re: elbert]
birder Offline
I don't why but knowing they're actually intelligent just makes them seem even more creepy. Imagine what they could be plotting.

However hearing that they stick to their own island is very good news. So paradise really does exist!

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