Naturalist icon Naturalist

Roberta Schiess

Born and raised in the Galápagos, Roberta Schiess Bahamonde’s grandparents were among the first permanent inhabitants of Santa Cruz Island, arriving from Switzerland in the 1940s. Her mother is also a naturalist guide in the Galápagos, so this is a profession she has been exposed to her whole life, and she often accompanied her mom as she guided visitors. 

She spent an idyllic childhood running wild on her family’s cattle ranch in the highlands, fully immersed in her father's passion for agriculture. This led her to volunteer for the Israeli government at a big farm on a kibbutz to prove to herself this was indeed the direction she wanted to take in life. She loved it. Over her lifetime, Roberta has witnessed two major problems in the Galápagos: insufficient food production and the challenge of conserving the ecosystem in the face of pests and plagues present in the food that arrives from outside the archipelago. Because of this, she decided to work towards finding a sustainable way of farming in the Galápagos. During her career, she has had the opportunity to work at a vegan food processing company in Los Angeles, California, where she learned how important it is for farmers to find a way to add value to whatever they grow. In 2016, she earned a bachelor’s in agronomic engineering from EARTH University in Costa Rica, and in 2017 she applied to become a Naturalist Guide for Galápagos National Park. Her dream is that Galápagos will someday become fully self-sufficient and that agriculture will produce sustainable income for its people.

My upcoming expeditions

Wild Galápagos Escape (8-Day)

May 23 2024
Jun 29 2024
Jul 4 2024
Nov 2 2024
Nov 7 2024

Wild Galápagos & Peru Escape

May 24 2024
Oct 25 2024

Wild Galápagos Escape (7-Day)

May 28 2024
Oct 29 2024

Galápagos Aboard National Geographic Endeavour II

Aug 9 2024
Aug 16 2024
Sep 20 2024
Sep 27 2024
Dec 13 2024