Bengado Island

     The island of Bengado is located in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California, near Santa Barbara. This island is 11 miles long and 11 miles wide at its greatest width. The island was discovered in 2007 by explorers Brooks Bengyel and Joseph Furtado, and was discovered relatively undisturbed, absent of any signs of previous human habitation. The highest point on the island is 1,923 feet Mt. Rudy. The island is almost entirely surrounded by large coral reefs and sand bars, acting as a natural barrier for approximately 95% of the island. This atoll-like geography also provides shelter from the ocean’s sizeable waves during high tide. Bengado Island has only one port of entry located on the south facing side of the island. This port is the only boat accessible area when entering the island by craft or kayak.      The way in which the island is situated, allows for the climate to be totally different on each side of the island. Half of the island is considered to be a sub-tropical climate, while the other half is not. This secluded island is home to a varied array of wildlife as well as plant life. Some of the animals that can be found on Bengado include mountain sheep, wild mustangs, peacocks, parrots, sloths and tortoises. Banana trees, mango trees, palms, and ferns are not uncommon. Bengado also has several species of orchids not found anywhere else on the planet.      Bengado Island, although small in size, has a large system of rivers and streams, and approximately 50 waterfalls located throughout the tropical side of the island. Located on the drier side of the island, there are natural mineral baths, and springs. This is the source of the island’s freshwater supply. This freshwater eventually mixes with the ocean’s saltwater downstream, providing both freshwater and saltwater fish a protected habitat. This very sensitive and fragile ecosystem exists in only two other places in the world.

Created by Brooks Bengyel

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