To get to the Ballestas Islands you boarded a speed boat and head out across the Bay of Paracas. The first stop is the candelabra geoglyph which is attributes to the Paracas culture, which predates the Nazca. The Ballestas islands are know as the poor man’s Galapagos. For thousands of years birds have deposited guano on the island. So much so that in 1930’s 300's of tons were shipped to Europe for fertilizer and munitions for WWI. In the past the Inca mined the island for guano to fertilize their fields. There are over a million birds on the island, mainly cormorant, boobys, terns, penguins, and others. The isles are honeycombed with sea caves, and every 8 years a mining operation harvests about 5 tones of the new guano deposits and sells it for $5M dollars. As we approached the island we went through 1000’s of cormorants washing their wings of guano after spending the night sleeping on the island. It was literally a scene out of Hitchcock’s “birds. The top on one of the isles was black as our boat pulled up and as we got closer we realized it was cormorants. The amount of birds (and guano) on the isles is amazing. We spent about 1 hour and 40 minutes with 30 minutes out and back and 40 minutes at the island. On our way back we spotted some bottle nose dolphins and stopped and watched the 2 pods that seemed to be frolicking in the area.