All the indications on the hurricane from the frequent updates given to us by our lovely Thomas Cook rep Nancy and the track of its location was that the eye was going to hit well to the east of where we were but hurricanes can change path at any time so it’s best to be prepared for the worst. We also didn’t know how big it was - some can be hundreds of kilometres across. Texts from friends and family at home with access to the internet were warning of rain in biblical proportions. But before that there was still time for wildlife watching and although it was now largely cloudy with the light not very good it was warm there were still lots of butterflies and anoles about. Down at the wooden bridge over the lagoon there were few warblers in the mangroves. In fact there had been a dearth of small birds in the last few days – it is known that birds are able to detect storms from long distances away so perhaps they had all moved off to the west out of harms way. There was a Yellow Warbler still present and a Green Heron sat on the rail before ruffling its feathers and jumping back into the mangroves.
A Caribbean Daggerwing Marpesia eleuchea, seven Mexican Sailor Dynamine postverta, ten Caribbean Banner Lucinia sida and a Eufala Skipper Lerodea eufala were the best. We had never seen this skipper close to the hotel before and never seen this number of Caribbean Banner either. Many were clearly females flying around the foodplant Serjania diversifolia testing the leaves looking for somewhere to lay but after some time watching I didn’t see any actually do so. A search of the leaves produced one egg laid on the upper surface. It was pale green in colour with a distinctive white top.
An obliging male Cuban Blue Anole Anolis allisoni occasionally showed its dewlap.
At the hurricane meeting at 1pm we were told the beach and pools were now off limits and that the latest prediction was that the hurricane would arrive later tomorrow. The afternoon was spent getting set up in our new room and working out logistics.
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Here we will post interesting news about what we and others have seen in Cuba.