Santa Cruz II – June 22 – 27
“Today was a beautiful afternoon with flamingos at Floreana Island, known as one of the most mysterious places in the Galapagos, at the visitor site of Punta Cormorant. We then headed towards the so called flour beach, a beautiful and natural beach about half a mile from the landing site. This is one of the most beautiful beaches in the world with no souvenir shops, ice cream parlours or hotels. A great blue heron flew by us very close during our walk. I immediately knew where that fellow was heading to, the nesting site of the sea turtles, and I was right! We found him right by the nesting site. Suddenly, the heron was making itself comfortable in spite of our presence, that’s when we realized the heron was snapping tiny turtle hatchlings from the sand.
We have seen this behaviour before at the same beach, but what it was new to us was the “shared hunting” that the heron and frigate were engaged on. The heron would make a hole in the sand and the frigates would use their hook-shaped beak to reach the hatchlings. Some tiny sea turtles were snapped out of their nest and the frigates stole the hatchlings, what and incredible and sad show to witness!
It was a very special natural event to share with our guests.”
Maricarmen Ramírez, Expedition leader Santa Cruz II