Genovesa Island

Jan 03, 2020 - National Geographic Endeavour II


Today, we arrived with National Geographic Endeavour II inside of a huge caldera on Genovesa Island. We started our adventure very early in the morning with a kayaking excursion. We kayaked around cliffs that rise up 30 meters from sea level, where we saw swallowtail gulls, red-footed boobies, and some lazy Galapagos sea lion and fur seals sleeping in the rocks.

Genovesa is a very special place because it is home to the biggest colony of red-footed boobies in the Galapagos, as well as many Nazca boobies, and of course, the snorkeling time was amazing with the marine turtles, sharks, schools of fishes and sea lions. Later we landed on a beautiful white coral beach: the Darwin Bay! We were exploring this area and we found a big colony of red-footed boobies. Our guests learned about the differences between the three species of boobies that are found in the Galapagos Islands. There are two varieties of red-footed boobies, most of them have brown body and a bluish beak, but there is also a white variety. We found some nests built in the mangroves, and bushes, with cotton-feathered babies. There were also the Nazca boobies, the largest of the varieties. We found many nests of them on the ground, from the large population of Nazca boobies that live on the Prince Phillip´s Steps. Adults are white with a black band on the end of their wings and yellow bills. The immature Nazca booby is grey, and the babies have a lot of cotton covering their skin to keep them warm. Thousands of pictures were taken, also of the endemic swallowtail gulls, which are recognizable from the white spots on their tail and the red eye ring.  

At the night, we joined Captain Pablo Garces and his natural history staff for the farewell cocktail and dinner. We hope that everybody had enjoyed our home this week. The Galapagos Islands will be waiting for you for more adventures!

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About the Author

Karen Ascensio

Naturalist

Karen was born on the island of Santa Cruz, at the heart of the Galapagos Archipelago, and spent her entire childhood there, only leaving to go to university at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in the Andean capital of Ecuador. Here she got a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, concentrating mainly on the field of Applied Ecology. The first time she entered the sea she was just 3 months old and has been captivated by the ocean ever since. She is now a PADI dive instructor and works as both Naturalist Guide and Marine Reserve dive guide for the Galapagos National Park Service, all around the archipelago.

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