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Galapagos Islands Travel & Tours

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Galapagos calendar by month

Galapagos calendarGalapagos Calendar

What’s happening when in the Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands are an exciting destination every month of the year. Something is always happening and there are departures every week. The usual peak travel times of July, August and late December ideally need to be booked well in advance (6 months to a year) but not always. Review the calendar below to see what will be happening when you visit the Galapagos.

Below the calendar is a list of general wildlife species it is possible to see in the Galapagos whenever you go. Weather patterns, water temperatures and rainfall can affect the timing of certain wildlife behaviors. See our Galapagos weather and seasons page for specific information about weather patterns during different times of the year in the Galapagos.

 

 January - June
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 July - December
JANUARY
  • Espanola: adult marine iguanas change into their bright mating colors
  • Green sea turtles are laying eggs on the beaches of Galapagos
  • Isabela: Land iguanas begin their reproductive cycle
  • Land birds start nesting after the beginning of the rains
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting
  • Lava herons are nesting
  • Young waved albatross fledge
  • Giant tortoise eggs are hatching
FEBRUARY
  • Floreana: Greater flamingoes begin nesting
  • Galapagos doves are nesting
  • Black-tailed pintails start breeding season
  • Espanola: Nazca boobies are wrapping up nesting cycle
  • Santa Cruz: marine iguanas are nesting
  • Penguins migrate to cooler waters around Isabela & Fernandina
  • Giant tortoise eggs hatching
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting
  • Lava herons are nesting

Galapagos wildlife calendar

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARCH
  • Fernandina and North Seymour: Marine iguanas are nesting
  • Espanola: Waved albatross arrive and begin to locate their mates through their complex dance
  • Isabela: Galapagos penguins
  • San Cristobal and Genovesa: Frigatebirds begin their mating display
  • Giant tortoise eggs hatching
APRIL
  • Green sea turtle eggs are hatching
  • Espanola: Arrival of more waved albatross and more dancing
  • Isabela: Land iguana eggs are hatching
  • End of the giant tortoise hatching season
  • North Seymour: Blue-footed boobies begin their courtship dancing
  • Genovesa and San Cristobal: Frigatebirds are displaying and mating
MAY
  • North Seymour Blue-footed boobies do their mating dance
  • Gardner Bay, Punta Cormorant and Puerto Egas: Green sea turtle eggs hatching
  • Santa Cruz: most of the marine iguanas eggs are hatching
  • Espanola: Waved albatross are laying eggs
  • Band-rumped storm petrels begin their first nesting
JUNE
  • Santa Cruz: Giant tortoises migrate from the highlands to lowlands to prepare for nesting
  • Beginning of the giant tortoise nesting season
  • Birds and certain cetaceans who are migrating north stop off in Galapagos along the journey
  • Some groups of humpback whales that migrate up to equatorial latitudes along the coast of Ecuador reach the Galapagos
  • Whale sharks may be seen in the far northwestern islands
  • Genovesa: endemic short-eared owl starts mating season
JULY
  • West Coast of Isabela: Whale and dolphin sightings are common
  • Darwin and Wolf: Whale sharks may be sighted
  • Santiago: American oystercatchers are nesting on the beaches
  • Fernandina: Flightless cormorants are courting and nesting.
  • Sea bird colonies are breeding
  • Blue-footed boobie chicks are active and curious
  • Greater flamingoes court with a dance
  • Frigatebird chicks are beginning to hatch
  • Lava lizards are mating
  • Espanola: Waved albatross chicks are hatching
AUGUST
  • Fernandina: Fur seals are in breeding season
  • Galapagos sea lions are giving birth to pups
  • Santa Cruz: Giant tortoises are moving back up to the highlands
  • Frigatebird chicks are hatching
  • Greater flamingo courtship dances continue
  • Migrant shore birds are arriving
  • Santiago and Espanola: courtship of Galapagos hawks
  • Genovesa: Nazca boobies and swallow-tailed gulls are nesting
  • Wolf and Darwin islands: Whale sharks are sometimes seen
  • Humpback whales pass Galapagos on migration route
  • Lava lizards are mating
SEPTEMBER
  • Bartolome: Galapagos penguins are breeding
  • Sea birds are nesting and active
  • Galapagos sea lions are very active. Females are in “heat” season and the males are busy noisely patrolling their territory
  • Sightings of migrating humpback whales
  • Wolf and Darwin islands: Whale sharks are sometimes seen
  • Fernandina: Fur seals are in breeding season
  • Lava lizards are mating
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting Galapagos
OCTOBER
  • Lava herons are nesting
  • Darwin and Wolf islands: Whale shark sightings
  • Lava herons are nest building
  • Espanola and Isabela: Blue-footed boobie chicks are being raised
  • Giant tortoises are still laying eggs
  • Fernandina: Galapagos fur seals are in breeding season
  • Lava lizards are mating
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting
NOVEMBER
  • Sea lion pups are active
  • Brown noddy breeding season
  • Band-rumped storm petrels start nesting again
  • Darwin and Wolf islands: Whale shark sightings
  • Green sea turtles are mating
  • Fernandina: Fur seals are in breeding season
  • Lava lizards are ending mating season
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting
  • Lava herons are nesting
DECEMBER
  • Hatching of Giant tortoise eggs begins and lasts until April
  • Green sea turtles are mating
  • Young waved albatrosses fledge
  • Fernandina: Fur seals are in breeding season, other pups are growing into teenagers and adults
  • Migrant shore birds are visiting
  • Lava herons are nesting

 


Wildlife calendarBelow is a list of the marine life and wildlife that can be seen in Galapagos most of the time. Please keep in mind that Galapagos creatures don’t always know when they are supposed to be doing the things on our Galapagos calendar. Also, please bear in mind that there is wildlife which is not on the calendar because it can be breeding year round or depending on food availability.

Wildlife that can be seen in general in Galapagos:
  • 2,900 different species of marine life (465+ species of fish alone)
  • 29 types of land birds (22 of which are endemic)
  • 1995 species of terrestrial and freshwater invertebrates (of which 53% are endemic)
  • Whales: 12 species have been spotted including humpback, orca and sperm whale
  • 5 species of herons + migrating visitor heron
  • Flamingos, frigate birds, waved albatross
  • Dolphins: bottle nose, white bellied, common
  • Various crustaceans and mollusks
  • Shark types: Port Jackson, whale, scalloped hammerhead, Galapagos horn, Galapagos, tiger, smooth hammerhead, silky, blacktip, bull, great hammerhead & mako
  • Rays: spotted eagle, bat eagle, giant manta, golden cownose, smoothtail mobula
  • Octopus, lobster, sea urchins, sea anemones, sea cucumber, Galapagos black coral, cup corals, sea slugs, scallops, sponges and sea stars
  • Galapagos marine iguana and Galapagos land iguana
  • Galapagos sea lion
  • Galapagos fur seal
  • Sea birds: blue footed boobie, red footed boobie, Nazca boobie flightless cormorant,
  • Marine turtles: Pacific green with visits from hawksbill, leatherback and olive ridley
  • Giant tortoises
  • Galapagos garden eel

Galapagos calendar When you are ready for more details contact us and put a trip to the Galapagos Islands on your calendar!

 

 

 


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