Galapagos Cruise Report: Española Island

From the National Geographic Endeavour in Galápagos July 18, 2010

Española is situated at the eastern side of the Galápagos archipelago. This is the oldest island we have. The age of the island has given the species time to adapt to its specific conditions, so endemism is very high. Among wildlife endemic to this island, we saw a species of mocking bird, lava lizards, snakes and marine iguanas. The walk in the morning was at Punta Suarez, this visitor site is one of the best we have! Early on we found that blue footed Bobbies were nesting along the trail, as well as the Nazca Bobbies that had covered the cliff.

The highlight of the walk was seeing the albatrosses. During the warm season, the albatrosses leave the Galápagos following the cold waters of Humboldt Current to the south. During the cold season, they will come to Española Island to nest. We saw many of them with their eggs, but some chicks were spotted to. The cycle of life has started again! These young birds will have to be ready to fly by the end of December, and just 4 years later they will return to Española Island, when the time will come for them to find their mate and nest here.

In the afternoon we move to Gardner Bay. We shared some time with hundreds of sea lions at a beautiful white coralline beach, and we also kayaked, snorkeled and explored the seas from our glass bottom boat.

This was our first full day at paradise; it is hard to believe that there is more to come!


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