Blue Footed Booby

The Blue Footed Booby, is named, quite appropriately, for his huge blue feet. The males take great pride in them, and during the mating rituals, will show off their feet by doing a strut that is high stepping and designed to show the blue feet to the prospective mate. The more blue their feet are, the more the females are attracted to the male of the species.

A blue footed booby showing off his feet
A blue footed booby showing off his feet

The Blue Footed Booby lives off the western coasts of Central and South America. The chain of Islands called The Galápagos is where about half of all breeding pairs of blue-footed boobies actually live.

Like most of the boobies, blue-foots nest on land at night.

When the daytime arrives they take to the air and remain there in search of seafood, sometimes fishing in groups to gather more food.

Bluefoots may fly very far out to see looking for schools of fish, and particularly like anchovies. When their prey is in sight, they fold their long wings back around their streamlined bodies and plunge into the water from as high as 80 feet , so streamlined they barely make a splash. They can also dive into the water from a sitting position on top of the surface of the water.

Blue-footed boobies have another use for their their webbed feet, which is to help warm and to cover their young .
The Female booby lays one to three eggs, and when the chicks hatch, both parents will care for and feed them until they are old enough to fly and to dive.

“All half-dozen or so booby species are thought to take their name from the Spanish word “bobo.” The term means “stupid,” which is how early European colonists may have characterized these clumsy and unwary birds when they saw them on land—their least graceful environment.”


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