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Date: 16 Apr 2010 05:52:00
Title: Close Encounters with a Penguin!

Boats appear to leave the anchorage here on Isabela on a daily basis, so we have been able to move inside behind the reef. The wind has eased and the water in the anchorage is a lot flatter. The sun has been out (it was so grey when we arrived), showing the water to be a lovely turquoise colour, surrounded by the black volcanic rock. So it's quite a setting and a lot more inviting than when we first arrived. Even more, we have penguins swimming around the boat! Not in huge numbers, but ones and twos several times a day and when going ashore in the dinghy you have to be careful not run over them. We see groups of up to a dozen on and around the rocks surrounding the anchorage and today, while cleaning the waterline, one came up and inspected what we were doing, looked me full in the face only inches away and tried eating bits of weed on the boat before shooting off. They are lovely little creatures. Sea lions also swim round the boats, but there are not so many as in San Cristobal. But there are a lot more blue-footed boobies here. They fish in the anchorage (diving like gannets) and sit on the rocks surrounding it. So when it's like this, it's a lovely place to be. There's still 20 or so boats in here, when 15 would be more comfortable, so there's still the risk of boats being too close if the wind drops and they go every which way. We hope that doesn't happen!

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