The Galapagos Hawk is the archipelago's only hawk species and the largest bird of prey. The sight of its broad wings riding the updrafts is a common one from the sundeck of your Galapagos cruise. By the end of your trip, you’ll be familiar with their easily recognized “kree-kree-kree” calls as they circle overhead looking for their next meal.
The Galapagos Hawk’s primary prey is the Galapagos Lava Lizard, and other small reptiles and birds and they can, therefore, be found distributed around most of the uninhabited islands. You won’t see them around the more populated areas as there simply isn’t enough food for them. Despite being the top land predator in the Galapagos, the Hawk is under threat. There are now only 130 known breeding territories left, with less than 500 individual birds, and the species is officially listed as “Vulnerable”. Sadly the biggest threat is from illegal human activity and the changes brought about by introduced non-native species.
At Galapatours we’re passionate about the Galapagos wildlife and its preservation, and all our naturalist guides on our cruises share this passion and concern. Thus, they will help you to understand the threats and challenges the vulnerable Galapagos Hawks face and what the National Park authorities are doing to preserve and protect them.
Fast Facts about the Galapagos Hawk
- The Galapagos Hawk is the largest resident bird on the archipelago
- The Galapagos Hawks reuse the same nest each year
- Galapagos Hawks eat a wide range of prey including birds, lizards, iguanas, insects, baby tortoises, and rats
- During the breeding season, female Galapagos Hawks mate with up to 7 males who all help with incubation!