Monday, March 14, 2016
Day 4 San Cristobal Island Galapagos
Well, today was interesting in that it had it's highs and lows. One of the places I went to was built in the 1960's called El Ceibo, a small tree house in the city of El Progreso. The tree, called a Sable, is one of three that size on the island, It had running water and electricity but quite small - different.
The other high today was an opportunity to hike up an extinct volcano called El Junco, to visit the only fresh water lake on the island. The lake, Laguna El Junco is in the middle of the highlands (wetter and more green vegitation) and because of the amount of clay deposits, the water stays within the caldera.
After walking around the rim of the volcano, I then was able to visit a breeding and conservation facility for "intermediate domed" tortoises. So the first land tortoise I saw on the hike to the facility was a female :-) Later, I saw breeding areas for newly born tortoises from about 1 month up to about 3-4 years. They release the tortoises into the wild in the northern part of the island. They had nearly 100 tortoises roaming around the facility seemly content in their dry and hot environment. Also, they had native to the island "poison apples" which were ok for the animals to eat.. but very very bad for humans - milky sap came from their stems. This plant soulded a lot like a similar plant that I saw at the Botanical Gardens in Hawaii.
Lastly, I went to a sandy beach to relax for about an hour (... my low (geologically speaking) point of the day :-p ) I did witness some blue-footed boobie diving from the air to catch fish. I was told that they don't get their blue feet until adult and that they are the only birds on this island that catch fish this way. Frigatebirds are more like pirates in that they take food from others and don't fish on their own.
Tomorrow, plan to do some more snorkeling in an area known for its sharks - I'll let you know how it goes.