Day 8 – at Santa Cruz and Santa Fe Islands

Day 8 – We were at Santa Cruz Island today. We walked along trails on the South Plaza Islet. Later we motored over to Sante Fe Island and went snorkeling. We had a wet landing at Sante Fe and explored that island too.

These stones have been polished by the bellies of sea lions.
Here is our group walking back to shore.
Frigatebird
More frigatebirds
Frigatebirds.
After a wet landing at Sante Fe Island
Lots of adorable sea lions on the beach.
A mom and her pup relaxing in the water
A local mockingbird
Mockingbird
Lots of cacti on this island.
Cactus tree
the inside of the cactus tree...

These stones have been polished by the bellies of sea lions.

It was surprising to see evidence of sea lions (their poop mostly) all over the island.

Here is our group walking back to shore.

Frigatebird

Frigate birds often flew with our boat possibly taking advantage of the draft. Wiki for Frigatebirds indicates:
  • Frigatebirds are found over tropical oceans and ride warm updrafts. Therefore, they can often be spotted riding weather fronts and can signal changing weather patterns.
  • These birds do not swim and cannot walk well, and cannot take off from a flat surface. Having the largest wingspan to body weight ratio of any bird, they are essentially aerial, able to stay aloft for more than a week, landing only to roost or breed on trees or cliffs.
  • Lacking the ability to take off from water, they snatch prey from the ocean surface or beach using their long, hooked bills. They catch fish, baby turtles, the marine iguana, and similar items in this way. Frigatebirds will rob other seabirds such as boobies, tropicbirds, and shearwaters of their catch, using their speed and manoeuvrability to outrun and harass their victims until they regurgitate their stomach contents.

More frigatebirds

Frigatebirds.

After a wet landing at Sante Fe Island

Lots of adorable sea lions on the beach.

A mom and her pup relaxing in the water

A local mockingbird

Mockingbird

Lots of cacti on this island.

Cactus tree

the inside of the cactus tree...

In case you were wondering about the inside of the cactus tree... It is interesting, almost like a net.

These stones have been polished by the bellies of sea lions. thumbnail
Here is our group walking back to shore. thumbnail
Frigatebird thumbnail
More frigatebirds thumbnail
Frigatebirds. thumbnail
After a wet landing at Sante Fe Island thumbnail
Lots of adorable sea lions on the beach. thumbnail
A mom and her pup relaxing in the water thumbnail
A local mockingbird thumbnail
Mockingbird thumbnail
Lots of cacti on this island.   thumbnail
Cactus tree thumbnail
the inside of the cactus tree... thumbnail

Here are some pictures from our snorkeling today.

A picture of the one eel that we saw
The eel
The eel
The eel
A ray
Another view of the ray
Lots of fish
More fish
Cathy in her
More fish
me again  ;-)
More fish
One of my favorites - the black, orange and white model.
more fish
These anchovies were amazing to swim through.
Here is one of those black and orange fish again
Fish
Fish

A picture of the one eel that we saw

The eel

The eel

The eel

A ray

Another view of the ray

Lots of fish

More fish

Cathy in her "rash guard"

I guess you were expecting a swim suit. We used rash guards this time and highly recommend them. We first encountered rash guards on the Great Barrier Reef a couple of years ago. They seemed like a good idea then. At the Great Barrier Reef, their main selling point was to protect you from stinging jelly fish. They also protected people from the sun and protected the reefs and fishies from sunscreen. Seemed like a great idea. We didn't try them there though and resisted the idea when we went to Hawaii the following year. There, we wore t-shirts and sunscreen. It seems like there was always a spot where I missed sunscreen.... the back of my knees, ankles, maybe a spot on my shoulder... so, I decided it was time to give these a try. They worked well. An unexpected benefit was warmth. I think the water was a bit chilly and the dark colors helped.

One of our travel companions lent Peter his camera (Thank You, John!). We did not want to discourage him from snorkeling by tying up his camera so we did not use it on the last two snorkeling trips. Every successful trip has a story of something that goes wrong, and on this one, for us, it was camera trouble.

More fish

me again 😉

More fish

One of my favorites - the black, orange and white model.

more fish

These anchovies were amazing to swim through.

Here is one of those black and orange fish again

Fish

Fish

A picture of the one eel that we saw thumbnail
The eel thumbnail
The eel thumbnail
The eel thumbnail
A ray thumbnail
Another view of the ray thumbnail
Lots of fish thumbnail
More fish thumbnail
Cathy in her
More fish thumbnail
me again  ;-) thumbnail
More fish thumbnail
One of my favorites - the black, orange and white model. thumbnail
more fish thumbnail
These anchovies were amazing to swim through. thumbnail
Here is one of those black and orange fish again thumbnail
Fish thumbnail
Fish thumbnail