Welchman Hall Gully
Nature Walk
Part 2

The green monkeys usually appear early or late, if at all.

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Welchman Hall Gully Nature Hike
Part 2

A walk through the gully begins from the car park located at the north end. The maze of growth here is almost bewildering, but the National Trust, which has operated the gully since 1963, untangles much of the confusion by providing a leaflet that identifies many of the plants and several of the most important natural features.   

The gully doesn't open until 9, a little late for the green monkeys to be moving, so a late afternoon walk around 4 is often the better time. Green monkeys were brought to Barbados from West Africa about 350 years ago, apparently as pets.

Today they're considered pests because of the damage they cause to fruits and vegetables. Even though there's been a bounty on the animals, somewhere between 5,000 and 8,000 of them still flourish.

Their favorite haunts are the heavily forested sections, which is why they're a fairly dependable sight in Welchman Hall Gully. Look for them feeding on the ground and not just in the trees.

You may spot only a single monkey or you could see a whole troop of about 15 animals scrambling through the tree canopy. If you do get a good view of a monkey through binoculars or a telephoto lens, pay particular attention to its face.

Although only about 75 generations have passed since they were brought in, the Barbados green monkeys already have evolved some physical differences from their African cousins.

The Barbados green monkey has more of a "dog-like" face and less fur around the eyes; its vocalizations also are said to be different.

Because of the cliffs lining the gully and the thick tree canopy, much of the walk is in perpetual shade. The one exception is at mid-day when the sun is almost directly overhead.

Many of the trees and plants in Welchman Hall Gully naturally grow on Barbados, but quite a few are introduced species brought in over the years. They include guava (from Central and South America), the golden apple (from the South Pacific), nutmeg (the Moluccas or Spice Islands) and avocado pear trees (from Mexico).

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Welchman Hall Gully Part 1

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