Day 2 - October 6, 2013 - Bartolome and Santiago Island
By Giancarlo Toti, Naturalist
Weather: Sunny with scattered clouds
Air Temperature: 21ºC
Pressure: 961 hPa
Wind: 10 knot
Today I started our day anchored nearby the southeast corner of Santiago Island, right next to one of the most emblematic places of the Galapagos Island; Bartolome Island. Some of our guests did a pre-breakfast outing that happens with the sun rising behind the spectacular cinder and tuff formation of Bartolome. The light was perfect for photography. Bartolome is well known for its incredible landscape that includes several different geological formations.
After breakfast I went back to Bartolome but at a different location. I landed on a golden beach, which is a great place to snorkel from. The water temperature was 72 degrees and water visibility was over 30 feet. Razor Surgeons, King Angels, Parrots, Grunts, Snappers, Puffer fish and more were found in the water even a White Tip Reef shark; it was a great experience.
In the afternoon the ocean condition were rough, strong winds and a swell coming from the southeast. I leaded a Zodiac cruise along the coast of Santiago close by a visitor place know as Espumilla beach. I spotted several species of sea birds such as Blue-footed Boobies, Brown Pelicans, Brown Noddy, and Galapagos Shearwaters that were going after fish at that time of the day. Galapagos Hawks gliding on top of the edge of a cliff were Brown Pelicans chicks were perching. On the rocks of an old landslide by the ocean a group of Galapagos Fur Seals were sitting and posing for us. The landscape of the coast was composed by eroded red cinder painted by the golden light of the sun setting creating a spectacular view of Santiago Island.
On my way to the Silver Galapagos, I saw one of my favourite sea bird, the Galapagos Petrel, which is one of the endanger species of the archipelago. This magnificent birds nest on the highland of the islands were farmers of the inhabited ones affected their habitat to use it as farming land. Little about their migrating routes its known.
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