I have never seen so many birds in my entire life! I was absolutely amazed! This morning we went on a 2 hour speed-boat tour of Ballestas Islands. These are a group of Islands composed mainly of rock that are about 24km from Paracas.
On the way to the island we saw thousands of birds. Some were diving in and out of the water, others seemed to be gliding just above the water and others flew in neat dance-like formations as if they have rehearsed to perfect a show for us.
The islands look like random rock formations without any trees or vegetation on them. There are some sea mussels clinging to the rocks where the waves break. It’s incredible to see all the wildlife living on the islands – penguins, pelicans, seals, sea-lions and of course lots and lots of birds.
When you are about ten meters away from the rocks you get a whiff of a sharp poo-like odour…. guano. (Makes me think of that Jim Carey movie, Pet Detective, with “shakaka”). According to our tour guide guano is exported to be used as fertilizer. In 2011, 4000-tons of guano was “harvested”. They only harvest the guano every 8 years. Another interesting thing he said was when guano mixes with the sea water it releases some chemical which repels sharks.
A trip to this island is highly recommended and is really worth the 30 sols.