Floreana Island- Punta Cormorant, Champion Islet, and Post Office Bay

Nov 21, 2017 - National Geographic Islander

Today we visited Floreana Island, one of the oldest Islands of the archipelago, characterized by hundreds of volcanic cones. Floreana was one of the first Islands to be colonized by humans, therefore, it is a place with rich human history. These days Floreana harbors a small human settlement of less than 120 people.

Before breakfast we landed on Punta Cormorant in the northern part of Floreana. A brackish lagoon is the ideal habitat for a series of coastal birds, including flamingos, herons, and ducks.

Later we circumnavigated Champion Islet with our Zodiacs looking for the Floreana mockingbird, and this little islet, jointly with Gardner, is the last refuge for the Floreana mockingbird. We also observed swallowtail gulls, Nazca boobies, brown pelicans, and tropical birds. Before lunch we snorkeled around this islet and observed a great variety of tropical fish, including parrotfish, yellow tail surgeonfish, damselfish, and wrasses.

After lunch we visited Post Office Bay, an iconic place used by whalers to communicate with their families. We collected some postcards and distributed them among the passengers, so they can hand deliver the mail left by other travelers. Later we kayaked and paddle boarded and observed penguins, black tip and white tip sharks, eagle rays, and sea turtles.  

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About the Author

Luis Vinueza


Luis arrived in the Galápagos Islands for the first time when he was 11 years old in 1983, and from that time on he knew that Galápagos would one day be his home. He returned to the islands in 1995 and spent 14 months camping in a tent. Seven of those months were spent on Española Island, studying the relationship of reproductive success and mate retention of Nazca boobies. In 1997, he started working for the marine lab at the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS) on different fields including diving surveys to assess the patterns of marine biodiversity around the Galápagos Marine Reserve. His research included counting lobsters and sea cucumbers and participating as an advisor for CDRS during the negotiation process that led to the 1998 creation of the Galápagos Marine Reserve. 

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