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Wildlife Region

Christmas Island

Christmas Island

Christmas Island’s geographic isolation and minimal human disturbance has produced an incredible level of biodiversity and endemism, leading to the label of the ‘Galapagos of the Indian Ocean’.

Over 90 different crab species can be found on the island, with some obvious like the enormous Robber Crab, whilst others are far more elusive. But it is the island’s epic annual migration of approximately 60 million Red Crabs from the forest to the ocean shoreline to mate and spawn each wet season (November/December) that has made this region renowned across the globe.

The island is also one of Australia’s greatest birdwatching regions, with a rookery of around 80,000 seabirds nesting each year, with 23 breeding or resident species and 86 migrant bird species recorded as island visitors. It is home to the world’s rarest booby and frigatebird, the Abbott’s Booby and the Christmas Island Frigatebird and one of the most beautiful seabirds on earth, the Golden Bosun. BirdLife International has declared Christmas Island as both an Endemic Bird Area and an Important Bird Area.

The island is home to 237 native plant species, 28 types of butterfly, 90 types of beetle, 14 types of snail and 5 native lizard species, including the Christmas Island Giant & Lister’s Gecko and the Blue-tailed Skink, with the majority of these species found within the Christmas Island National Park that lays claim to 64% of Christmas Island’s land area. As well as protecting the Jurassic style rainforests, mangroves, wetlands and extraordinary cave system, the National Park extends 50m offshore.

Christmas Island boasts 88 species of coral and more than 650 different types of fish and is regarded as one of Australia’s best dive sites, due to the high volume of immense drop-offs only metres from the shoreline. Sensational visibility of up to 50 metres, ensures that guests can observe abundant fish including surgeonfish, wrasse, butterflyfish, angelfish, groupers, parrotfish as well as reef sharks, dolphins, turtles and Manta Rays and Whale Sharks on an opportunistic basis.


Featured operator

  • Featured operator

    Indian Ocean Experiences

    When 70% of your island home is made up of Christmas Island National Park, with more endemic species than any other Australian protected area, it’s easy to understand how Managing Director of Indian Ocean Experiences, Lisa Preston, became captivated by the beauty, the wildlife and the significance of the biodiversity of Australia’s Indian Ocean islands, and felt the need to share these unique experiences and encourage their continuing protection.

    Proudly calling herself a local, Lisa Preston founded Indian Ocean Experiences in 2011, being one of the...

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