Sea lions and other yokes

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South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Santa Fe Island
March 4th 2009
Published: March 13th 2009
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Raking it easy

David Attenborough eat your heart out

Despite the anchor being hauled up at 3 in the morning and the engines starting we got a good night´s sleep and were fighting fit for the first full day on the islands. The rip was very well run, breakfast at 7 and the first excursion from the boat at 8. We leaped in to the dinghies at 8 on the button and off to Santa Fe island. We landed on a gorgeous beach and there they were, loads of sea lions, without a care in the world. Bothered by humans? No way, in fact it was like they were posing for us. It was unbelievable. Although, I´d seen this on telly before I´m not sure I really expected the animals to be so comfortable around humans. I suppose that´s what happens when you stop trying to kill them or poke at them or whatever. Of course, I was sorely tempted to kick one of them just to see the look of shock on his face. "Bet you weren´t expecting that ".

Santa Fe also had loads of land iguanas (as opposed to marine ones). Same thing, these boys were happy to pose

Grand day thank God
for us too. Now your basic land iguana is different to his marine cousin. He feeds on cactus and is usually yellow or green and thrives when there is rain around. Marine iguanas are black eat algae and do better when it is dry. And get this - when it is really dry the land iguanas are very weak so the marine boys come in and have their wicked way with the females. Sly feckers, I say, cos the land iguanas won´t touch the female marine iguana. Maybe they have higher standards, I don´t really know.

When we were all iguaned out, we went back to the boat, changed in to swimming gear, back on to the dinghies for a spot of snorkelling. The amount of stuff you can see, I can´t really do it justice to be honest, but it was very very special.

Bitch Master

Post snorkelling, we had lunch on the boat and panned out for a little while before our next jaunt at half two. This was a cliff walk, where we saw the bachelor sea lion colony. This is basically for males who can´t get a mate. The alpha males are known as

What are you looking at , this is my island
bitch masters - I swear to God. What a name - and not a gold chain or hummer in sight. We also saw blue footed boobies, which strangely enough are birds and not breasts with blue feet (much to the disappointment of many o the boat)

After a very full day, back to the boat, a beer on the sun deck waiting for dinner. I tell you it´s a tough life.

Additional photos below
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