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Geology of Eleuthera Island

Taken from The Ephemeral Islands, by David Campbell

The genesis of the modern Bahamas Islands was choreographed by events which took place thousands of miles away in the polar extremes of the planet. Four times during the Pleistocene Epoch, which began one million years ago, the ice caps expanded and glaciers scraped over the temperate regions of the northern hemisphere. The final Ice Age, called the Wisconsin, was a relatively recent event in terms of geological time; it ended about 10,000 years ago.

In retreat, the Ice Ages left many legacies. The massive glacial moraines of the American Midwest, the Great Lakes, and the scoured granitic shield of eastern Canada are all remnants of the Wisconsin Era. So are, indirectly, the modern Bahama Islands. For although the glaciers came no closer to the islands than 1,000 miles, they lowered the sea levels sufficiently to foster the conditions that led, in this interglacial period of high sea levels, to the modern-day Bahamas.

Triassic Period (200 million years ago):

Modern Bahamas:


Eleuthera OverviewBahamas CrittersBahamas GeologyProtect the ReefsHouse Rules
Careers in Marine ScienceThe DogsBahamas Snorkeling