Thoughts and Tales from the Galapagos Islands
HOTEL MANAGER, SANTA CRUZ, 1986 – 2011
It was really early in the morning and we were arriving at Bartholomew Island. I noticed that many of our guests were heading up to the deck, so I followed them out of curiosity. To my complete and utter surprise, a short eared owl was perched on a door in front of Deck B! He must have come with us from North Seymour, the previous island on our itinerary, because the species is not found in Bartholomew. It just stood there, in silence, watching everyone take its picture with big wide-open eyes. Of course, it was an honour to have him on board and we all cherished the moment greatly! But, then, we noticed the visit posed a “situation”, since we couldn’t leave him on Bartholomew because there are no owls on that island. And we would not be responsible for introducing species where they don’t belong this late in the game!
Luckily, the bird was so thrilled of being on a boat; we befriended it and were able to transfer him onto Yacht Isabela II, where he travelled back to his true home, North Seymour. If the bird really wanted to emigrate to Bartholomew, he would have to fly there by his own means… not by hitching a ride with our M/V Santa Cruz to get there so comfortably!
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