Genovesa Island

Aug 31, 2019 - National Geographic Islander


We’ve saved the best for last, and on our final day of expedition guests enjoyed watching and photographing colonies of red-footed boobies, frigate birds, gulls and many others. We began our day with a wet landing on a coral beach on Genovesa island. We had our first encounter with sea lions and red-footed boobies as soon as we landed. We eagerly took out our cameras and had fun documenting the wildlife we were immersed in, and after a few hours of exploration, we headed back to the ship to get ready for snorkeling and kayaking along the cliffs of this massive crater.

In the afternoon we had several options such as a Zodiac ride or kayaking along the dramatic cliffs that make up the bay and anchorage of Genovesa. These cliffs are also home to the elegant and fast moving red-billed tropic bird. We then visited Prince Philip's Steps, and had our last exploratory walk in the dry palo santo forest of the island. While on our hike we observed red-footed boobies, however the most prominent were Nazca boobies. There is a lot of activity this time of year, and we easily spotted these birds in courtship, nest building or feeding their babies. The highlight of the afternoon were the short-eared owl sightings. The owls are happy on this island and come in search of prey, as there is a large petrel colony here.

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About the Author

Juan Carlos Avila

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Juan Carlos was born in Quito, Ecuador. He spent part of his elementary schooling in the province of Cotopaxi, a beautiful area in the Ecuadorian Andes ringed by volcanoes. In 1989 his family moved to the Galápagos and settled in the highlands of Santa Cruz, the second largest island in this archipelago. It was here that Juan Carlos finished high school and gained his deep love for nature.

About the Videographer

Mark Clement

Video Chronicler

Mark Clement grew up in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains in Upstate New York, where he developed a deep appreciation for wild places at a young age. Now living in the Green Mountains of Vermont, he has made a career out of capturing the beauty of wild places at home and around the world.

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