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North Plaza


Note: The Plazas are a pair of tiny islets lying just off shore from the east coast of Santa Cruz. Each is east-west elongate and slopes toward the north, giving each a low-lying north shore and a south shore marked by steep cliffs.
Island: Between North and South Plaza
Location: Millenium
Year: 2006


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South Plaza near shore


Note: Our hike followed a loop trail leading from a dry landing on the north shore toward the cliffs of the southeast corner.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near landing
Year: 2006


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Guano "whitewash"


Note: Much of the area of this small island is accessible to sea lions. As a result, exposed rocks, although made of black basalt, are coated with a layer of bird and iguana guano that has been polished by countless sea lion bellies into a shiny "whitewash."
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near landing
Year: 2006


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Marine iguanas pose


Note: Marine and land iguanas both inhabit South Plaza. Because of the island's small size, normal ecological niche partitioning between them is difficult. Among the results are hybrid marine/land iguanas - virtually unheard of elsewhere.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near landing
Year: 2006


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Collapsed lava tube "chute"


Note: A collapsed lava tube provides easy access to and from the water for sea lions.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near landing
Year: 2006


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Land iguana carcass


Note: Everyone yields their substance to the environment eventually.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near landing
Year: 2006


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Plazas Opuntia- Sesuvium scrub


Note: The Sesuvium of the Plazas was extremely red, reminiscent of H. G. Wells' Martian red weed.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near cliffs
Year: 2006


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Approaching the high point


Note:
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near cliffs
Year: 2006


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Plazas high ground


Note: The cinder cone in the background is actually on Santa Cruz.
Island: South Plaza
Location: Near cliffs
Year: 2006