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Galapagos Wildlife

The Galapagos have never been connected with the continent. Gradually, over many hundreds of thousands of years, animals and plants from over the sea developed there and as time went by they adapted themselves lo Galapagos conditions and carne to differ more and more from their continental ancestors.

Thus many of them are unique: a quarter of the species of shore fish, half of the plants and almost all the reptiles are found nowhere else. In many cases different forms have evolved on the different islands.

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The wildlife that captured Darwin's attention still intrigues travelers today on Galapagos tours. The islands were uninhabited when they were discovered in 1535 and the animals still have little instinctive fear of man. Played a substantial pan in his formulation of the theory of evolution. Since no large land mammals reached the islands, reptiles were dominant just as they had been all over the world in the very distant past. Another of the extraordinary features of the islands is the tameness of the animals.

The islands were uninhabited when they were discovered in 1535 and the animals still have little instinctive fear of man.



Galapagos Penguins (Spheniscus mendiculus)

Galapagos penguin

The Galapagos penguins live around the Bolivar Channel between western coast of Isabela Island and Fernandina Island. Just 30cm tall, the white-bellied Galapagos penguins are the only penguin species that nest entirely in the tropics and the sole penguin species that reside in the northern hemisphere.

Blue-Footed Boobies (Sula nebouxii)

Galapagos Blue footed boobies

Blue-footed boobies are by far the islands' most commonly observed birds, performing their famous plunge-dive and goofy-looking mating dance for visitors on several different islands. It has brown upper plumage and white lower plumage, with wings being a slightly darker brown than the rest of the body. JThey can be seen breeding on most islands north of the equator in the Galapagos.

Red-Footed Boobies (Sula sula)

Galapagos red footed boobies

The Red-Footed Booby is the smallest of the booby species and arguably the weirdest. Its bright lipstick-colored feet are attached to a body of rather dull white with pale brown wings. The tree-nesting species live almost exclusively in the infrequently visited islands of Genovesa, North Seymour, and Wolf.

Masked boobies (Sula dactylatra)

Galapagos masked boobies

The masked boobies are the largest and most well known for the murderous habits of their nestlings. Although masked boobies always lay two eggs, only one hatchling survives, since the stronger one pushes its weaker sibling out of the nest to ensure that it will get enough to eat.

The masked boobies are brilliants pure white body plumage contrast with its almost black wing marking Like the blue foot the masked booby nests on the ground but being heavier and larger it has more trouble taking off. As a result its colonies are more usually found near cliffs and on the steep outer slopes pf tuff and cinder cones, where the upward air currents make it easier to take off.


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