North Seymour and Rabida Islands

Jan 06, 2019 - National Geographic Endeavour II


On our first full day of exploration we visited to two different islands, starting in the morning at North Seymour. This island lies north of Baltra Island and is home to several colonies of sea birds and Galapagos land iguanas.

We started with a dry landing and right there we were greeted by a young Galapagos sea lion, as well as by hundreds of Sally Lightfoot crabs. As we continued walking along the national park service trail, we began to notice how dry the vegetation looked, however as we came closer to the Galapagos incense trees we noticed some small leaves on them.

This morning we saw several juvenile and adult great frigatebirds sitting on bushes and flying over our heads. Some males had their red gular pouches inflated, and these were magnificent frigatebirds. On a bush we found one male great frigatebird with a small red pouch—this species usually start to mate around the month of February until June.

Along the trail, we also found several Galapagos land iguanas, and along the coast, there were their cousins, the Galapagos marine iguanas. We also saw many Galapagos sea lions playing in some small tidal pools.

Later in the morning, we navigated towards Rabida Island. This island has a very intense red color on the lava rocks due to the high concentration of iron. During the first half of the afternoon, we went snorkeling and encountered several species of fish and marine invertebrates. For the second half of the afternoon we went on a scenic stroll along the coast of Rabida.

We ended the day enjoying a great sunset from the shore.

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About the Author

Gilda Gonzalez

Naturalist

Gilda was born in Ambato, located in the very heart of the Ecuadorian Andes. Since she was a child, she loved animals, often rescuing street cats and dogs. Her parents always made sure there were nature books and plenty of Jacques Cousteau’s videos at home. She graduated from high school with a degree in chemistry and biology. Afterwards, Gilda obtained a B.A. in tourism and hotel management in Quito. She also studied English, French and German, later spending two months in Brussels, Belgium.

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