The southern Bahamian island of Great Inagua is known for two things — its old salt plant and a 60,000-strong flamingo flock. Now some Bahamians wonder if they might end up losing both after Hurricane Ike ripped across the island last week causing millions of dollars in damage.
Most of the flamingos, which attract bird-watchers from all over the world, took off before Ike arrived and have not been seen since…
Glenn Bannister, president of the Bahamas National Trust, said all of the island’s birds — including Bahama parrots and White Crown pigeons — vanished before the storm hit.
The parrots returned after the storm, desperately seeking food among the storm-blasted trees and plant life. But for now, most of the flamingos have not come back and Bannister has no idea where they’ve gone…
Meanwhile, islanders are pondering another possible loss. Owners of Morton Salt, which employs 60 percent of the workforce on Inagua and is the only industry on the island of 1,000 people, have cast doubt on the salt plant’s future.
The company said it “cannot say with 100 percent certainty” that the badly damaged plant will continue operating.
Cripes. Let’s all go buy some salt and send Morton an email asking them to keep those folks on the job.