The lush growth of coconut, pandanus and the huge Puka trees springing out of the coral rock, reveal a rich earth, and well documented.
The Barringtonia houses the tanga’eo – often the target of that very aggressive Mynah bird that besieges so many of the islands today. In the forlorn hope of reducing insect levels, which are high here, the hapless Mynah’s other name is Gudgeon’s Revenge, after some blighted do-gooder who hoped the bird would help.
Also pivotal is the main industry for Mangaia – Pupu – the tiny yellow land snails which emerge only after rain (when the mamas are seen collecting pupu) – are highly prized as hatband decorations and long “eis” for arriving and departing visitors. The gathering, processing, piercing and stringing of these miniscule shells is hugely time consuming. They are in high demand, particularly in Tahiti and Hawaii – hardly surprising considering the process behind their creation.
Babes Bar, Accommodation Babes Place, and the local Store, are all located in the village of Oneroa. The bar is open Fridays from 9pm - 2am, and Saturday from 8pm - 12am.