The prevalence of open-angle glaucoma is believed to be very high among West Indian blacks. To begin investigating the prevalence and risk factors for glaucoma and other eye diseases in Barbados, WI, a pilot study was conducted. The pilot project identified a stratified, random national sample of 300 persons over 35 years of age who were invited to participate in an ophthalmic examination and an interview. Of those contacted 89% were eligible and 95% of these agreed to participate. The overall glaucoma prevalence in the participants was 6%; it was 13% among black and mixed persons over 54 years. Age related cataract, hypertension, and diabetes were frequent findings. Although the sample size of the pilot project is small, the results suggest a high prevalence of glaucoma in Barbados, a finding that merits further study.