Seabirds

Blue-Footed Booby

Blue-Footed Booby Gallery

More about  Blue-Footed Booby

The blue-footed booby is native to the tropical regions of the Pacific Ocean and is part of the six species of boobies. There are about six thousand blue-footed boobies in the Galapagos, typically nesting on the rocky shores and cliffs of the islands. Half of the world’s population live in the archipelago.

Their clumsiness on the ground, lead the bobby to be named by the Spanish “bobo,” which means silly or stupid. The blue-footed booby has an aerodynamic shape and the extraordinary binocular vision make it one of the best fishing birds. It breathes by the corners of its beak and their nostrils are permanently blocked as they dive to feed. They can reach the speed of 90kmh (60mph) diving in water, and they can go down to depths of 25m (82ft).

In males, the brighter the blue color of the feet, the more reproductive success they may have. Female boobies lay between two to three eggs a year, creating high competition between the offspring and resulting in one survivor that portrays natural selection in every generation. Both take care of the nest for about 45 days and feed the chicks together, by regurgitation for approximate two months.

The boobies are opportunistic breeders, preferring the cold season to mate (June-August).  Overall, they tend to be monogamous and their courtship ritual is one of the most entertaining to witness. The male offers a present, usually a rock or a branch, and then dances in front of the female showing the feet and making noises while standing with the beak up high and the wings wide opened with tips to the sky.

Males and females are very similar, differences are that females are slightly bigger and have a larger eye pupil. 

Places where you may see this animal:

Blue-Footed Booby
  • Animal Group: Seabirds
  • Scientific Name: Sula nebouxii
  • Animal Average Size: 81 cm
  • Animal Average Weight: 1.5 kg

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