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Crooked Tree Bird Sanctuary

Visit the Amazing Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary
In Belize, the place names are just as colorful as the wildlife, and the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary (CTWS) is no exception. More than 200 years ago, English loggers in search of valuable stands of logwood nicknamed the land around a large lagoon in northern Belize "Crooked Tree" because the trunks of logwood trees grow in strange, twisted shapes. 

Today, you can still find plenty of native logwood trees here in this amazing region that measures more than 16,000 acres (65 square kilometers) in size. Managed by the Belize Audobon Society, the CTWS is a region of wetlands, broadleaf forests, lagoons, creeks, and pine savannah that make it an ideal home for wildlife and birds

Indeed, the CTWS is officially an Important Birding Area (IBA) as defined by the Audobon Society, just one of six in Belize. Hundreds of bird species thrive in this region, including endangered bird species like the Yellow-headed Parrot and the enormous Jabiru stork. During the dry season, both indigenous and migratory bird species rely on the wetlands in the CWTS. 

Although birds are the main attraction for most visitors, the CTWS is also teeming with animal and plant life. The Central American River Turtle, an endangered species, is found almost nowhere else. And the CTWS is also home to animals like black howler monkeys, crocodiles, and jaguarundi. 

In the center of the main lagoon inside the CWTS lies the village of Crooked Tree. Founded in 1750, it is believed to be the oldest inland European settlement in the country and this small village is famous for its many cashew trees. Every May, the village holds a Cashew Festival where treats like cashew wine, cashew syrup, and stewed cashews are enjoyed along with lots of live music, games, and dancing. 

Visitors to the CWTS can navigate this amazing landscape by using well-marked trails or by boat or horseback. Several "blinds" have been established for bird watchers interested in spotting some of the many amazing birds that thrive in this region. There's also a small ancient Maya site named Chaux Hiix located in the southwestern corner of the CWTS that is only accessible by boat. 

If you'd like to explore this amazing natural wonderland for yourself, be sure to book your tour with Belize Boutique Resort and Spa. The resort is located in northern Belize just a few miles from the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary.



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Belize Boutique Resort & Spa Music Written by MELONIE GILLETTWritten for Belize Boutique Resort & Spa by Singer/Songwriter MELONIE GILLETT
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