Bermuda: What's So Important?
Bermuda was formed about 100 million years ago by volcanic eruptions along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Around this time, the Atlantic Ocean was a lot narrower so Bermuda was closer to Europe and Africa, but due to sea floor spreading and the widening of the Atlantic-Bermuda got shoved away from the Eastern hemisphere, all this time still managing to never move far from its position to the North American coast. The top of the volcanic seamount got eroded below sea level and then corals began to grow around the margins in the early Pleistocene, which takes us back to a look at the unconformities. Today the volcanic rocks are now seen as basement rock for a limestone platform. The limestone that formed atop originated as carbonate sand from the reefs that formed dunes, these got cemented together through the action of rain into rock.
|More than 150 caves are found in Bermuda, and all are formed in this limestone cap rock. These caves contain many stalactites, and stalagmites. Although many of the entrances to the caves are inland, some caves extend down to sea level and contain pools of water.|
|Bermuda's longest cave is Green Bay Cave System and is completely submerged in water, this cave also contains about 2 km of explored passageways, while most other caves average in 18 meters of passageway.|
|Underwater caves that contain stalactites and stalagmites are proof of the idea that during the Ice Age, caves must have been dry for prolonged periods of time.|
|In Bermuda's anchaline caves comes new species that were previously unknown to man, and there are 75 aquatic cave adapted species that have been identified from caves including: 64 crustaceans, 5 mites, 2 ciliates, 2 gastropod molluscs, and 2 segmented worms.|
Facts about Bermuda:
|Location including geographic coordinates:||North America, in the group of islands in the North Atlantic
ocean, east of South Carolina in the United States. It lies 570
miles off the coast of North Carolina in the Unites States. Geographic
coordinates are 32 20 North, 64 45 West
The map is a map of Bermuda from the source http://www.exxun.com/Bermuda/b_mp.html Click to enlarge the thumbnail.
The bigger map on the bottom is a map of bermuda that shows about how many miles it is from Bermuda to popular places closer by. This is from the source http://bermuda-online.org/abcbda2.htm
|Area:||53.3 square kilometers or 21 square meters, about 1/3 the size of Washington, DC.|
|Climate:||Subtropical; mild, humid; gales, strong winds common in
The charts on the side are from http://www.free-weather.com/St.-George-Bermuda.php?nav= and it shows the temperature, humidity, precipitation, and average wind speed of St. George's in Bermuda. You may click on the images to enlarge the thumbnails.
|Extreme Elevations:||Atlantic ocean in the lowest point at 0 m, while the Town Hill is the highest point in Bermuda at 76 m.|
|Natural Resources:||Limestone and the temperature for the amount of tourism.|
|Natural hazards and ocean dangers:||Natural
hazards in Bermuda are hurricanes through the months of June to November
and tropical storms, while ocean dangers
consist of rip currents, sharks, and the Portuguese man of war.
The picture at the top left is of a satellite image of a hurricane from Northeastern Bermuda taken on Saturday September 19, 1992. While the picture right beside it is of a North Atlantic tropical storm coming for Bermuda on Wednesday June 28, 1995. Pictures are from http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/Bermuda/satellitephotos.html
The picture at the bottom is of a rip current from the source http://www.ripcurrents.noaa.gov/overview.shtml
While the picture on the top at the far right hand side is showing a rip current from Delaware Sea Grant and shows aerial view of more than one rip current given by Dr. Wendy Carey and found http://www.ripcurrents.noaa.gov/graphics.shtml You may click on this image to enlarge the thumbnail.
|Environmental issues facing Bermuda:||Asbestos disposal, water pollution, preservation of open space, and sustainable development.|
|Interesting water fact:||No
fresh water in Bermuda, even the roofs are set in a way to maximize water
Thumbnail picture of a roof in Bermuda, to show how they get their water from the rain. Source of picture is http://spas.about.com/library/weekly/aa090602d6.htm
Specific Caves in Bermuda: this is a map of the Crystal Cave and Fantasy Cave location. The source of this picture is http://www.bermuda.com/CrystalCaves/pages/indexhistory.html
in Hamilton Parish, Bermuda this karst cave is 500 meters in overall
length and in the 1990's fossil bird bones were dated back several hundred
thousand years ago, and found by the Smithsonian Museum. At this
cave David Milne Holme calculated the age of a stalagmite to 600, 000
years old in 1864. David Milne Holme was the son of the British
Admiral that first came across this cave. This cave is one of the
largest dry caves on the island and has three entrances, one being a large
sinkhole entrance. there are small lakes that are found inside the
cave, specifically 5 of them, and they lead back to the sea to show wave
Picture of Admirals' Cave thumbnail, click to enlarge, the source is http://www.tamug.tamu.edu/cavebiology/BeCKIS/images/Admirals1.jpg
Picture on the top as well that is in full size is from http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/Bermuda/images/Admiral1.jpg
Picture on the bottom is of the fossil bird bones found, the source is http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/BeCKIS/hotspot.html
also in Hamilton Parish, but more specifically in Grotto Bay Beach
Resort. This cave was one of the first five to be in
Joyce's Dock group, which is situated in the location of Grotto Bay Beach
resort, and the location is also right beside Prospero's cave. Many
people believe these two caves are connected, and maybe share a water
pathway. The main feature to the cave is a large, and quite deep
lake. After the hotel was built in the 1960's the guests would
frequently use the lake in the cave as a place to swim without the weather
getting to them. The lake in this cave is tidal, just like all the
other lakes in caves that are found in Bermuda. The lake inside this
cave is also formed by sea water migrating through fissures in the porous
rock that is around the cave.
Click to enlarge the thumb nail image. Picture from http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/Bermuda/images/Church1.jpg
again in the Hamilton Parish, along with the rest so far, but this more
specifically is Wilkinson Avenue, Bailey's Bay. This karst cave is
also 500 meters with 350 meters underwater, and a vertical range of -62
meters. This is also one of the most interesting, and most known
caves in Bermuda-and if you believe it was discovered through child's
play. March 1904, Carl Gibbons and Edgar Hollis were playing, and
lost their ball and after moving around some rocks to locate their missing
ball they found a hole. March 17, 1907 Percy Wilkinson, his father
and three brothers were shown the entrance of the cave by John Hollis, and
the exploration from the Wilkinson's began there. The next day they
sent out to search this cave and found crystal stalagmites and stalactites
which circled a lake of 16 meters deep. This cave was then opened to
the public by the Wilkinson's January 8, 1908 and even Jim Henson went to
Click on thumb nail to enlarge, picture from http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/BeCKIS/images/Crystal1.jpg
The picture beside it, is also in the Crystal Cave. Picture from http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/Bermuda/images/Crystal2.jpg
|Fantasy Cave||Discovered in 1907 by Arthur Elystan Haycock when a hole in his property gave out a draft, and he turned to Carl Gibbons and asked him to investigate the hole. Carl Gibbons was asked to make trails and a concrete staircase from the surface to the lake, and then in 1912 was opened to the public as Wonderland Cave. After a while it was closed and gated in 1931, and only in 1999 did redevelopment begin again. In July 2001, the cave was finally opened to the public eyes again, and this time under the name Fantasy cave.|
|Prospero's Cave||Location is in Hamilton Parish in Grotto Bay Beach Resort, and this is one of the first five caves to be in Joyce's Dock group, along with the Cathedral Cave. It was said to be discovered in 1609-1610 by Sir George Somers, which would mean this may be the first cave to have been discovered in Bermuda. The cave was first called the Island Cave, after it was named Prospero's Magic Cave, and now as Prospero's cave for short. in order to get into the cave one must go down a short flight of stairs that leads to deep lakes and if you look above there are stalactites. Now the cave has a little bit different of a make over, and also contains an underground bar, and discotheque.|
Extra Bermuda Cave facts:
|Although many people think Bermuda caves are strong and can not be ruined. The things that threaten Bermuda caves are such thing as:|
|dumping sites and|
|and construction and quarrying activities.|
|Many of Bermuda's caves have already been used as dumping sites.|
|While these caves have still remained intact, there are some caves that have collapsed that are now used for other such things: such collapsed caves include Blue Grotto, and the Devil's Hole.|
Bermuda's Pink Beach Sand-What's Up With That?
Other sites to look at:
http://www.bermudasun.bm/archives/2002-06-26/01News11/ Actually this is an article in the Bermuda Sun, but it talks about the Admiral's Cave, so enjoy!
http://www.tamug.tamu.edu/cavebiology/Galleries/BeCKIS-02/index.htm This is the website for more cave pictures, there are really neat and interesting. Take a look!
http://www.bermuda.com/CrystalCaves/pages/indexvirtual.html This is a website where you can see a virtual tour of both the Crystal Cave in Bermuda, and the Fantasy Cave.