Our SeaBird Air seaplane pilots have become very familiar with the porcine inhabitants of Big Major Cay this year. It is the most requested destination thanks to a couple of television shows. Now the pigs are quite famous and the fans flock to them to get a look or take a swim with these cute little creatures. Two or three times a week we are taking family groups or even couples to Pig Beach for a day trip. The pigs will even swim up to the floats to say hello. They really swim quite well and enjoy all the attention. It’s great fun, but please don’t feed them as they’ve had some problems lately due to the tourists providing snacks that are inappropriate.
There has been speculation about how the pigs first arrived on Big Major. I researched several websites regarding the pig’s history and found some interesting details. The pigs have survived now for generations. One thought is that they were left by sailors who planned to return for a pig roast. According to one website, the apparatus used to roast the pigs was known as a “boucan.” The word buccaneer was derived from this word. Imagine a pirate named after an early form of a barbecue grill! Historically it is known that sailors would leave animals including pigs, goats, and chickens on islands possibly for the purposes of reprovisioning for the journey back to Europe. The animals were able to forage on the islands and the crew wouldn’t have to deal with feeding (or smelling) the animals on board. Another thought regarding the pig’s existence on the islands is that they may have been shipwrecked and swam ashore. Now they have their own little paradise in the Exumas!
SeaBird Air can fly you to visit the pigs, then take you to lunch at nearby Staniel Cay where you can swim with the nurse sharks after lunch (or watch) if you’re so inclined. Hopefully the sharks will have been fed already. This trip takes a half day or about 3-4 hours. It’s an adventure you’ll never forget! The cost is about $3000 plus VAT (it does not include the cost of lunch) and the seaplane can accommodate up to eight passengers.
Shoreline Aviation – Providing Seaplanes Services and Adventures since 1980