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Top 10 Galapagos wildlife

by | Ecuador

Sea turtle

Snorkeling with green turtles is a highlight of a small group visit to the Galapagos. These lovely critters are often seen flowing effortlessly over the calm waters. 

Marine iguana

The Marine Iguana of The Galapagos Islands is the world’s only marine lizard. Because there was a scarcity of nourishing plants on land, it most likely evolved a marine existence, relying on seaweed instead. «The black Lava rocks on the shore are habited by enormous (2-3 ft), unpleasant clumsy Lizards,» Darwin wrote when he first saw them. They’re as dark as the porous rocks through which they creep, looking for food in the sea. «I call them ‘imps of darkness,'» says the author. You’ll see marine iguanas lounging on the rocks all throughout the islands, and you could even see one swimming along the water’s surface when snorkeling. Look for their sneezes on land, which they use to discharge salt from glands near their noses.

Galapagos giant tortoise

The islands were called after the gigantic tortoises since they are so well-known («Galapago» means «tortoise» in Spanish). They are the world’s biggest tortoise species, with an average lifespan of 100 years. Many of these massive beasts may be seen on the Santa Cruz Island mountains.

Galapagos penguin

The Galapagos penguin is one of the world’s tiniest and most northerly penguins; in fact, it is the only penguin species found north of the equator.

Blue-footed booby

Due to their amusing name and look, the blue-footed booby is one of the most well-known Galapagos species. Males strut their feet up and down in a strutting show for the ladies during the birds’ mating ritual, which is very amusing. They are not only present in the Galapagos Islands, but they also reproduce here, with nearly half of the world’s population breeding here.

Magnificent frigatebird

Male beautiful frigatebirds are among the easiest birds to identify. They have a massive crimson neck pouch that, when completely inflated, creates a magnificent show to attract females during mating season. Females find pouches with vivid colors to be more appealing.

Sea lion

Sea lions may be seen all across the Galapagos Islands, even lounging on benches in cities! Keep an eye out for cute newborn sea lions snuggled up on the warm sandy beaches for a nap. Sea lions are also not afraid of the water; if you go snorkeling, you’ll almost certainly have the opportunity to get up and personal with these lively creatures.

Flightless cormorant

This flightless bird is the only cormorant in the world that has lost its ability to fly. It is indigenous to the Galapagos Islands and only found on the western islands.

Waved albatross

The waved albatross is the archipelago’s biggest bird. Espanola Island is the only place on the planet where the whole population may reproduce. Visit Espanola on a boat excursion to the Central, South, and Eastern Islands to see these magnificent birds with wingspans of up to two and a half meters. You can see the colonies at their busiest between September and November, and you might even see a fluffy chick or two.





Finch

Last but not least, the finch, Darwin’s favorite bird. The finch, while not as fascinating as the others, was crucial in the formulation of Darwin’s theory of natural selection. Today, the Galapagos Islands include roughly 13 indigenous species, all of which developed from a single species.