The Nazca Booby is the largest of its species in the Galapagos Islands. Differing from their close cousins, the masked booby-Nazca boobies have a red beak, white plumage with reddish brown markings.
The birds breed year round-specific times vary depending on the island. During courtship, an elaborate mating ritual sets the tone. A male will point its head to the sky to get a partner’s attention, which then returns the gesture or ignore it. Once the ritual starts, the male gives presents to the female. If she accepts the gifts, the couple pair off.
Like other boobies in the islands, the Nazca booby fish at sea-feeding on fish and squid by diving into the water from heights of 100ft.
Most of the Nazca booby population in the Galapagos Islands, lives on three islands-Genovesa, Hood, and Floreana. Mating season for Española Island takes place from November to February; on Genovesa Island the season starts in August and continues until November. Mating is also dependent on having a fertile source of food. During El Nino years when the waters are too warm to foster the eco-system of the Galapagos Marine Reserve, breeding wanes until the small reef fish gain more ground and provides food for the larger sea birds.
When a female lays her eggs, she produces two. When both hatch one of the chicks takes the dominant role, eventually kicking the other out of the nest to die.
When to See Them –Year-round
Where to See Them – Genovesa, Hood, Española, and Floreana Islands
For more information about your options for land-based and cruise trips through the Galapagos Islands, contact a member of our team using our toll-free numbers or the contact form on this site.