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Pig Beach

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Big Major Cay
Nickname: Pig Beach
Vorobek Bahamas - swimming pigs.jpg
Pigs swimming in the Bahamas.
Big Major Cay is located in Bahamas
Big Major Cay
Big Major Cay
Location the Americas
Archipelago Exuma Cays
Total islands 1
Major islands 1
Capital city Nassau
Largest settlement Nassau (pop. 248,948; as of 2010)
Prime Minister Perry Christie

Pig Beach[1] (also known as Pig Island,[2] Major Cay,[3] and officially Big Major Cay[4]) is an uninhabited island (or cay) located in Exuma, the Bahamas. The island takes its unofficial name from the fact that it is populated by a colony of feral pigs that live on the island and in the surrounding shallows.

Geography and features

Exuma is a district of the Bahamas, and consists of over 360 islands.[5] Near Big Major Cay is Staniel Cay.[6] There are three freshwater springs on the island.[6]

Anecdotal history

The pigs are said to have been dropped off on Big Major Cay by a group of sailors who wanted to come back and cook them. The sailors, though, never returned; the pigs survived on excess food dumped from passing ships.[2][7] One other legend has it that the pigs were survivors of a shipwreck and managed to swim to shore, while another claims that the pigs had escaped from a nearby islet.[8] Others suggest that the pigs were part of a business scheme to attract tourists to the Bahamas. The pigs are now fed by locals and tourists[9] and the island is unofficially known as Pig Beach by the locals.[10]

Demographics and fauna

Big Major Cay is an uninhabited island.[11] The island is home to approximately 20 pigs and piglets.[8] A few stray cats[12] and goats[13] can be found on the island too.

See also


  1. ^ Ripley's Believe It or Not! Annual 2013. ISBN 978-1-60991-032-7.
  2. ^ a b "Beach Babe: The happy pigs that love to swim in the Caribbean (and we're not telling porkies)". Daily Mail. January 25, 2011. Retrieved February 28, 2013.
  3. ^ The Bahamas - Guidebook Chapter: Chapter from Caribbean Islands travel guide book (6 ed.). Lonely Planet. 2012. ISBN 9781743210826.
  4. ^ "Swimming with Pigs". The Island of the Bahamas. Retrieved February 28, 2013.
  5. ^ "Exuma". The Official Website of the Government of the Bahamas. Retrieved February 27, 2013.
  6. ^ a b Susannah Cahalan (January 30, 2011). "Pig Kahuna is 'bacon' on own island". New York Post. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
  7. ^ "Lucky swines have own island". The Sun. January 24, 2011. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
  8. ^ a b Greaves-Gabbadon, Sarah. "Best Bahamas Trips: Swim with Pigs in the Exumas". Caribbean Travel Magazine. Retrieved February 28, 2013.
  9. ^ Moorhouse, Austin E. (2004). Halcyon Days: From A Dream To Reality. Trafford Publishing. ISBN 9781412016650.[self-published source]
  10. ^ "Pigs swim in sea in Bahamas". The Telegraph. July 16, 2009. Retrieved February 27, 2013.
  11. ^ "Swimming Pigs of Big Major Cay". Atlas Obscura. Retrieved February 27, 2013.
  12. ^ Frommer's ShortCuts (2012). The Exumas, Bahamas: Frommer's ShortCuts (2 ed.). John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 9781118470343.
  13. ^ McRae, Mavis (May 23, 2012). "The Bahamas' Wild Pigs Meet Dr. Sylvia Earle And Mission Blue (PHOTOS)". Huffington Post. Retrieved February 28, 2013.

Coordinates: 24°11′01″N 76°27′23″W / 24.18361°N 76.45639°W / 24.18361; -76.45639