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Puerto Vallarta News NetworkTravel & Outdoors | April 2007 

The Marietas Islands' Blue-Footed Booby
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The blue-footed booby (Sula neboxuii)
The Marieta Islands, a craggy, wild, grassswept national park off Punta Mita on Mexico's Pacific coast, are home to one of the area's famous natural residents: the blue-footed booby.

The seabirds' shockingly bright blue feet are thought to attract the opposite sex. "They dive from sometimes rather large heights into the water. It's very cool," said Dave Mehlman, director of the Nature Conservancy's Migratory Bird Program. "They turn into living feather arrows as they plunge into the water."

About the Marietas Islands: Just off the northern coast of Banderas Bay, the Marietas Island Marine Reserve is one of the most popular places to snorkel in Puerto Vallarta. A variety of tropical fish, sea turtles and friendly giant manta rays flourish in the crystal clear waters surrounding these islands - but watching the whales and wild dolphins in their natural habitat is the most delightful part of this voyage!

Getting There: Vallarta Adventure's fully-equipped and comfortable catamaran cruises to the Marietas Islands often enjoy wild dolphin encounters and, from December to April, Humpback whales are sighted regularly. Upon arrival, you can snorkel or kayak through this Marine Reserve and Wildlife Sanctuary and discover the wide variety of bird and marine life that inhabit these islands.

Whales, dolphins, giant manta ray, tropical fish and indigenous birds such as blue-footed boobies and red-billed tropical birds form a unique and complex ecosystem in the shelter of these islands, and during the day there will be time to explore the islands' rocky caverns and archways while snorkeling, kayaking, or even scuba diving!

After you explore to your heart's content, a relaxing afternoon siesta gives you the opportunity to kick back and relax on the white sands of a beautiful, secluded beach. As you cruise back to Puerto Vallarta, the onboard fiesta wraps up a day full of fun-in-the-sun with an open bar, dancing, music, and entertainment provided by the Vallarta Adventure crew.

For more info about Vallarta Adventures's Marietas Islands' tours, click HERE.

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