Baltra - July 31st, 2007
Sea lions form a casual welcoming committee on the dock at Baltra.
During World War II, Baltra Island was occupied by by the United States in an effort to protect the approaches to the Panama Canal which is located approximately 1000 kilometres to the north. The islands are nearly as close to Panama as they are to the mainland of Ecuador. Baltra now houses the principal airport for the Galapagos Islands and a small Ecuadorian naval base.
The Yacht San Jose in Baltra Harbour.
After our TAME flight arrived, we had a short bus ride to the dock where we were transferred by panga to the Yacht San Jose. We had lunch and then boarded a panga for our first excursion into the mangrove swamps of Caleta Tortuga Negra (Black Turtle Cove) on nearby Santa Cruz Island.
Boobies diving for fish.
Blue footed boobies roost on rocks near the entrance to Black Turtle Cove.
A brown pelican perches on a mangrove tree in Black Turtle Cove.