Blue Footed Booby Colony in The Wetlands Isabela Island

Blue Footed Booby Colony in The Wetlands Isabela Island

It was almost the last full day of our trip, and we had only spotted one blue footed booby, which was on a clear day right around noon = bad light. We also spotted a few flying in the distance, but nothing close enough to capture with my 70-200. I felt supremely disappointed, because it wasn’t looking like we would be seeing any more of these bright blue footed creatures. They were after all THE main reason I wanted to visit the Galapagos Islands.

I was still determined to use what few hours we had left to track them down. We ended up cutting our volcano hike short and decided to rent bikes to see what we could find on our own. We were told that there were a lot of shore birds and flamingoes that hang out in the Wetlands on Isabela Island.

Bike riding in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos.
Bike riding in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos in search of the blue footed boobies.
Graveyard in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos .

We went out on all the small trails ending at different landmarks but found nothing.

On our last stop before we were just about to give up..

WE FOUND THE MOTHERLOAD!!! A blue footed booby colony!

Blue Footed Booby colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos.
Blue Footed Booby colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos.
Blue Footed Booby colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island Galapagos.
The Blue Footed Boobies in the Wetlands Isabela Galapagos Island.
Galapagos Blue Footed Booby birds in the Wetlands Isabela Island.The Blue Footed Boobies in the Wetlands Isabela Galapagos Island.
The Blue Footed Booby colony in the Wetlands Isabela Galapagos Island.
Galapagos Blue Footed Booby bird colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island.
Galapagos Blue Footed Booby bird colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island.
Galapagos Blue Footed bird in the Wetlands Isabela Galapagos Island.
Galapagos Blue Footed boobie in the Wetlands Isabela Island.
Blue Footed Booby bird colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island // Galapagos Birds.
The Blue Footed Booby bird colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island // Galapagos Birds.
The Blue Footed Booby bird in the Wetlands Isabela Island | Galapagos Birds.
The Blue Footed Booby bird colony in the Wetlands Isabela Island | Galapagos Birds.
You can purchase any of the above photos as prints here.

A few lessons learned on this trip & tips for your excursion:

  • When it comes to wildlife and nature, nothing is ever guaranteed. It’s important to set your expectations. I was so fixated on seeing the blue footed boobies that I wasn’t a happy camper the last day. It was a good thing that we didn’t give up and ultimately found them, but sometimes you just have to let things be. I know I could have had a much better attitude about it.
  • Expect a workout. You get a mix of paved road and sand, and it is pretty difficult to ride a bike through sand.
  • Wear lots of bug spray. The Wetlands have SOOOO many mosquitoes.
  • You may not have to leave the US to find them after all! After doing some research, it appears that there have been mysterious sightings along the California coast. Bird experts think this is due to a lack of food in their own native environments.
  • Shoot with a 200 mm or longer lens. We had a 70-200mm / 2.8 L with IS. You will need it for wildlife photos.
  • Go during mating season (June through August) if you want to see the blue footed booby dance.

Do you have any travel tips you’d want to share? We’d love to hear them!

xoxo estherJacob

This Post Has 9 Comments

    1. Thanks you! Aren’t they such interesting animals? :)

  1. Wow they’re so pretty!! Yay to finding a colony of blue footed booby! Now i want to see them too!!

    1. You guys should do a trip to the Galapagos! :) It’s on your calendar!

      1. i know … there’s just too many places to visit!

  2. my gosh, nature is so dang cool!
    as always love your little adventures!

    1. Thanks Amy! :D Isn’t it? Sometimes it’s so hard to believe animals like this exist.. until I see it with my very own eyes.

  3. Great shots!! I want to see a blue footed booby!! The graveyard is so colorful, that is neat!

    1. Ty! :) You should go during mating season! I’m kinda sad I missed out on their funny little dance. At first I thought it was some touristy landmark because it was so colorful.

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