South Plaza Island and Santa Fe Island
  • Daily Expedition Reports
  • 21 Apr 2022

South Plaza Island and Santa Fe Island, 4/21/2022, National Geographic Islander

  • Aboard the National Geographic Islander
  • Galápagos

The small island of South Plaza is unique. In such a small territory, we found a big population of Galapagos land iguanas. As we walked along the trail, we observed them sunbathing and eating cactus pads, their favorite food. It was amazing to find not only iguanas, but also populations of different seabirds, like swallow-tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds, and the Galapagos shearwaters that nest mainly along the cliffs of this small island.

 

Plaza has an amazing landscape with cliffs, the blue ocean surrounding the island, and red Sesuvium. The succulent plant turns a red color in the dry season, and it really looks like a carpet.

 

A colony of Galapagos sea lions with lots of puppies played close to the shore, and it was really fun to observe them.

 

In the afternoon, National Geographic Islander sailed to Santa Fe Island. The island is home of the Santa Fe land iguana, Canalophus pallidus. These iguanas have a pale yellow coloration and are bigger than the Galapagos land iguana. The rocky trail presented a dense forest of Opuntia cactus, a favorite food of the land iguana, and it led us to a beach crowded with sea lions.

 

Sunset on the island was the best way to end a great day.

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