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Daphne Major Island
Finch, a bird found on Daphne major island
The Galapagos Islands are a group of 19 distinctive islands that are full of endless beauty and exquisiteness. One of these islands is the Daphne Major Island, which is smaller than the other islands but is unique in its own. This is a central island, situated in the north of the Santa Cruz Island and to the west of the Baltra Airport. The entire island is wrapped up in 1/8 square mile, which you can easily cover in about an hour by simply strolling around the edges of the entire island.
This island has a rocky structure and features two craters in the center, which makes its formation a tuff cone. These two craters are known as the Daphne major and the Daphne minor. There is no human presence on this island and it features a dry climatic condition with no trees in the surroundings. However, there are certain plants that can thrive well in such weather conditions along with some insects. The major fauna present on this small Daphne Island is the finches. This particular species features small, medium and large ground finch along with cactus finch.
Apart from these, there are some owls and hawks that are occasionally found here. If you are fond of birds then this island is just ideal for you. The National Park services have restricted visits to this island and it is only used for scientific research. The study of Darwin’s finches was also conducted here by biologists, Peter and Rosemary Grant. They examined the life cycle and behavior of these finches, and their results strongly support the evolution theory put forward by the great Charles Darwin.
About the island
This island is also an abode for various other birds like the blue-footed booby, red-billed tropicbirds, Galápagos martins, Nazca booby, frigate birds and short-eared owls. You can also see masked boobies as well along with brown noddies, red- and swallow-tailed gulls. Various yachts and cruises sail between these two islands, which offer an excellent opportunity for the travelers to take memorable photographs.
This Daphne Island is volcanic in nature and its rim rises to about 120 meters above the sea level. Apart from the wildlife and marine life, these islands contain ongoing volcanic and seismic activities that will add thrill and excitement to your trip. The major things to do here are bird watching and crater hiking. All the enthusiastic trekkers can go for a steep trail hiking to the rim of the crater on this island.
There is no best time to travel to these aesthetically beautiful islands via a cruise service because it’s suitable to visit them throughout the year. The Islands of Baltra and San Cristobal are the entry point from where you will start your expedition. From here, the visitors get transported to any of the two docks from where they can board their yacht. Daphne Island features no port and only a few lucky people get the opportunity to get a close encounter with it.
Daphne Major Island is a peaceful place where you will find yourself completely lost in the middle of a plethora of natural wonders. So, complete your cruise trip to Galapagos by keeping Daphne Island as a part of your itinerary.
Tours and Excursions Description
- Visitors who do gain permission to go ashore venture up a steep trail to the crater rim. Finches, Masked Boobies, Short Eared Owls and Galapagos Martins are visible along the way.
- Nearing the summit, Red-Billed Tropicbirds nest in the cliffs. These elegant birds with long white tail feathers and a coral-red bill, nest in the overhanging ledges and crevices of the steep slopes. Magnificent Frigatebirds build their nests in the little vegetation that occurs on the slopes of the island and near the crater rim. On the floor of the crater, Blue-Footed Boobies make their nests between April and December. The presence of these seabirds makes Daphne an exceptional island to visit. A place where thousands of birds can be seen soaring overhead.