Today we have some photos from the Galápagos, taken by reader Karen Bartelt (see her earlier photos of giant tortoises).
Some miscellaneous photos from the Galapagos
First three are Sally Lightfoot crabs (Grapsus grapsus). Pic 1 molting, pic 2 reproducing, pic 3 hanging out – all shot on Fernandina:
Red billed tropicbird (Phaethon aethereus) nesting and flying – Genovesa:
Galapagos short-eared owl (Aseo flammeaus galapagoensis) – Genovesa. It was first hiding in a rock outcropping, but later came out into the sun.
IMHO, Genovesa is the best island for wildlife!
The Galapagos short-eared owl has developed a unique hunting behaviour on Genovesa island, at a colony of storm petrels. The petrels nest deep in tunnels in the lava rock, usually out of reach of the owls. However the owls have learnt to stalk nearby, watching the petrels as they enter and leave the tunnels. The owls then wait close by for the petrel to leave the tunnel and catch them unawares. Another technique they use is to hide in the entrance of the tunnel to grab a petrel as it flies in.