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Search Results - Galapagos

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Showing 1 to 25 of 178 Articles matching 'Galapagos' in related articles.
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1. Small But Perfectly Formed: The Vital Role of Darwin's Finches
August 23, 2017

For anyone embarking on a Galapagos cruise, knowing a little about the archipelago's role in the development of Charles Darwin's theories on natural selection will enhance the experience, even beyond an encounter with the islands' unique wildlife. Of course, it is that very wildlife that Darwin arrived to study in 1835, and his observations and subsequent theories changed our comprehension of the natural world forever. A Galapagos cruise provides an opportunity for wildlife aficionados to come to this magnificent part of the world and discover for themselves the place that, to this day, ... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

2. The Curious Galapagos Lava Lizard
August 23, 2017

For those who travel to the unique group of South American islands on a Galapagos holiday, opportunities to make the acquaintance of the diverse, much-studied wildlife arise at every turn. From the slow-moving Giant Tortoises and comical Blue-footed Boobies to the world's only Marine Iguanas, there is perhaps no place on the planet that nature and wildlife enthusiasts find more fascinating. An Abundance of Reptiles While it’s normal for mammals to be the predominant wildlife in many places, the reptilian species are the most abundant throughout this archipelago. Of these, members o... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

3. The Important Mission of the Galapagos Conservancy
August 23, 2017

As one of the most unique ecosystems on the planet, it's imperative that the biological integrity of the Galapagos Islands is preserved. The archipelago continues to play a vital role in the study of ecology through the research of its flora and fauna, and its value to natural science is immeasurable. Eco-tourism plays a major part in raising awareness of the importance of the region. For those on a Galapagos holiday, understanding the mission of the conservancy set up to advance and support the islands' biodiversity can offer some important insights. The History of the Galapagos Co... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

4. The Intriguing Dance of the Blue-footed Booby
August 23, 2017

For participants planning on a Galapagos cruise, there are multiple "bucket-list" experiences awaiting the avid nature lover. An encounter with a Giant Tortoise, a sighting of a Waved Albatross, or seeing the brief, colourful flash of the delightful Sally Lightfoot Crab are just a few. Something else that's a real treat for those lucky enough to bear witness is the intriguing and energetic ritual mating dance of the archipelago's Blue-footed Boobies, Sula nebuxii. These birds are seen in abundance around the archipelago (around half the world's breeding pairs make their home there), parti... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

5. The Rare Pink Iguanas of Wolf Volcano
August 23, 2017

Wolf Volcano, situated on Isabela Island in the Galapagos archipelago, is home to the world's only population of the rare Pink Iguana - Conolophus marthae. With around a mere 300 individuals estimated to be living around the summit and higher altitude slopes of the still-active volcano (erupting for the first time in 33 years in 2015), measures are in place to monitor the iguanas with a view to establishing a captive breeding programme to ensure the their future survival. For anyone travelling to the region on a Galapagos holiday, learning a little about this unusual and critically endan... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

6. Understanding the Rules of the Galapagos National Park
August 23, 2017

Before leaving for a Galapagos holiday, becoming familiar with the rules of behaviour set in place by the Galapagos National Park Directorate will ensure that visitors are equipped with the necessary knowledge to enjoy an experience that's both respectful and responsible. There are 14 rules set out by the National Park that must be strictly adhered to at all times, which apply to researchers, scientists, photographers and eco-tourists on Galapagos holiday itineraries. And, while those who travel on an organised Galapagos holiday will be accompanied by an experienced naturalist, personal b... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

7. Meet the Sally Lightfoot Crabs of the Galapagos Islands
August 23, 2017

While not endemic to the Galapagos Islands, the Sally Lightfoot Crabs are one of the most striking species for wildlife lovers to encounter on the archipelago, notable for their vibrant red and blue colouring and lightning-fast agility. Found in abundance around the coastal rocks and sandy beaches, they play a vital role in maintaining the delicate balance of the islands' eco-system. Encounter the Sally Lightfoot Crabs on a Galapagos Cruise A well-organised, small-group Galapagos cruise is one of the very best ways of seeing a wide range of land and marine wildlife. Exploring the b... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

8. At Home in the Galapagos: The Wildlife You Won't Find Anywhere Else
August 23, 2017

A Galapagos cruise is one of the most incredible wildlife travel experiences on offer around the world. The opportunity to encounter the wildlife of the fascinating archipelago in a relaxed, unhurried way allows participants to make a genuine connection with this most magnificent part of the planet. A Wealth of Unique Wildlife Many of the animals that can be seen during the course of a Galapagos cruise are endemic to the region and cannot be seen anywhere else in the world. The ones below are the most famous of these species, but there are plenty of others. The Waved Albatross:... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

9. Visit Sacha Lodge on a Galapagos Holiday
July 24, 2017

For those on a Galapagos holiday, adding a visit to the famous Sacha Lodge in Ecuador is the perfect way to top off a truly memorable wildlife watching experience. With Ecuador's only canopy walk and a rich, exotic wildlife population, the lodge is set within a 5,000-acre private reserve. It is renowned as South America's best and most accessible rainforest sanctuary. One Man's Dream Located in the Ecuador Amazon region, a 30-minute flight from the capital, Quito, the lodge is set on the edge of Lake Pilchicocha. It is the dream personified of a Swiss adventurer, Arnold Ammeter, know... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

10. Lonesome George of Galapagos - The Last of His Kind
July 24, 2017

For anyone embarking on a Galapagos cruise, one of the most anticipated wildlife encounters is with the island's iconic reptiles, the Giant Tortoise. While once the species lived on every continent, today the archipelago is one of only two remaining places in the world it can be seen. Separate Subspecies Like much of the unique wildlife of the archipelago, scientists believe that the tortoises of the Galapagos Islands arrived several million years ago by drifting over from the South American coastlines. After colonising on the islands of San Cristobal and Espanola, the species spread... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

11. The Mammals of the Galapagos Islands
July 24, 2017

For those who visit the world's best-known archipelago on a Galapagos cruise, the unique wildlife of the islands is undoubtedly the draw card. It's fascinating to think that the endemic mammalian species that are so iconic to the region arrived here by accident at some time or another – washed in from the mainland of South America by the converging currents. The Mammals of Galapagos Due to the nature of the location far from continental mainland there are not that many land based mammals native to the archipelago, but the aquatic species increase the numbers a little. Bats ... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

12. Meet the Magnificent Marine Life on a Galapagos Cruise
July 24, 2017

The Galapagos Islands are renowned for their unique wildlife, but perhaps more attention is given to its mammals, reptiles and avian species. However, the waters of the Pacific Ocean in which the archipelago sits are unmatched for their diversity and abundance of marine life. For those visiting the islands on a Galapagos cruise, there are many opportunities to get up close and personal with the marine life by swimming and snorkelling. This area is one of the few places on Earth where it's possible to see pelagic species very close to the shore. A Unique Location The archipelag... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

13. The Journey of the Galapagos Species
July 24, 2017

The Galapagos Islands are the perfect blueprint for the evolution of our natural world. While they have existed for millions of years, it was naturalist, geologist and botanist Charles Darwin who put them on the map. Since the publication of Darwin's On the Origin of Species in 1859, the archipelago has become one of the most studied places on the planet. The fascinating adaptations of the endemic wildlife of the islands formed the basis of Darwin's theories of evolution, but the history of how the species arrived in the first place is every bit as interesting. For visitors travelling to ... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

14. The Geological History of the Galapagos Islands
July 24, 2017

The volcanic archipelago we know as the Galapagos Islands is situated almost 1,000kms off the coast of Ecuador, in South America, distributed over both sides of the Equator. With a landscape of extreme diversity and great beauty, the geology and natural history of this fascinating region are of enduring interest. For those who come to the islands on a Galapagos holiday, along with the endemic wildlife, the intriguing story of how they came to form is what lends it such a unique appeal. Islands Formed by Fire The area is located right on the Nazca tectonic plate, so is in a cons... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

15. The Blue-Footed Booby of the Galapagos Islands
July 24, 2017

The wildlife-rich archipelago of the Galapagos Islands is home to a huge number of endemic and breeding avian species. For birdwatchers, the very best way to explore this fascinating region is on a Galapagos cruise. Visiting the smaller, less-accessible islands as well as the more high profile ones affords the opportunity to observe a vast and diverse range of birdlife. The Blue-Footed Booby One of the marine birds that can be seen on a Galapagos cruise itinerary is the very appropriately named Blue-footed Booby (Sula nebouxii). Their name comes from the Spanish "bobo", which means s... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

16. Meet the Galapagos Sea Lion
July 24, 2017

Home to some of the world's most unique endemic wildlife species, the Galapagos Islands is a highly sought after destination for keen amateur naturalists and photographers. For those who embark on a Galapagos holiday, encountering the fearless wildlife of the archipelago is a truly fulfilling experience. With its cheeky demeanour and inquisitive nature, one species everyone wants to see is the endemic Galapagos Sea Lion (Zalophus wollebaeki), which is found in abundance here – with an estimated 50,000 of the animal dispersed throughout the islands. Physical Appearance The males... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

17. Top Reads for a Galapagos Cruise
July 17, 2017

A Galapagos cruise is one of the most sought after wildlife travel experiences available to nature lovers and this fascinating archipelago off the coast of Ecuador is home to the most unique plant and animal life on Earth. The rest of the world discovered the Galapagos Islands when naturalist Charles Darwin undertook his research in this 'natural laboratory', which became the basis for his Theory of Evolution. While not everyone may have the attention span or the desire to attempt Darwin's "On the Origin of Species" (published 1859), there are countless other books dedicated to, or set a... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

18. Threats to the Galapagos Marine Life
July 17, 2017

With a total area encompassing 133,000 km2, the World Heritage-listed Galapagos Marine Reserve is home to nearly 3,000 marine species. For nature lovers, a Galapagos cruise is one of the most fulfilling ways of encountering these species in their own protected habitat. Renowned as one of the most biologically diverse marine environments on the planet, in 2007, UNESCO placed the oceans around the archipelago on its list of threatened sites: "World Heritage in Danger". Threats to the Marine Reserve Several different habitats exist within the reserve and each faces numerous threat... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

19. The Future of Galapagos
July 17, 2017

The so-called 'Enchanted Islands' of Galapagos have been an enduring source of intrigue since Charles Darwin published his famous work, On the Origins of Species, in 1859. This volcanic archipelago supports an array of plant and animal life that has uniquely adapted to its environment, and Darwin's observations and subsequent theories changed the way scientists, geologists and naturalists looked at the world forever. After many decades of decimation of the resident species (particularly the tortoise) at the hands of pirates and whalers, the region was designated a National Park in 1959. T... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

20. Preparing for a Galapagos Cruise
July 17, 2017

Anyone fortunate enough to be embarking on a Galapagos cruise should be prepared for what will undoubtedly be one of the most authentic and memorable holidays of their life. Understanding what to expect in terms of the itinerary is one thing, but knowing a little more about the actual machinations of a Galapagos cruise will only serve to enhance the experience. Travel Mindfully Within the delicate eco-system of the archipelago, it should go without saying that visitors should be respectful of the environment and its flora and fauna. While the wildlife is renowned for being fearless o... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

21. Fast Facts on the Galapagos Islands
July 17, 2017

As one of the most fascinating and biologically diverse regions in the world, the list of "interesting facts" about the Galapagos Islands would fill a book – and in fact the archipelago has been the subject of many. For anyone intending to visit the region who may not have the time or energy to dedicate to any in-depth research before their Galapagos holidays, these fast facts can offer a valuable introductory insight. Fast Facts for Galapagos Holidays • The islands are situated around 1000km off the coast of mainland Ecuador and are distributed on either side of the Equator. ... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

22. Discover Galapagos: One of the World's Most Unique Destinations
July 17, 2017

Home to some of the most diverse and accessible wildlife on the planet, the archipelago of the Galapagos Islands is a bucket-list destination for many nature lovers. For anyone who’s headed for the Galapagos, holidays with an experienced tour guide will afford an even deeper appreciation of this destination by instilling a basic understanding of the unique history, ecology and geology of the area. From Darwin to Modern Times While it was not Darwin who discovered the islands (that was Tomas Berlanga, in 1535), it were his scientific studies (from 1835) and subsequent theories on the ... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

23. Project Pinta in the Galapagos Islands
July 17, 2017

The story of Lonesome George is well known to anyone familiar with the Galapagos Islands. In 1971, the male tortoise was discovered living on remote Pinta Island, where the species was thought to be extinct. Up until his death in 2012 at the Charles Darwin Research Station, scientists and researchers made many attempts to introduce George to female tortoises from Santa Cruz in the hopes of re-establishing the Pinta Island species – albeit a hybrid one. While the efforts were ultimately unsuccessful, George became a global cultural icon as the last of his kind. His discovery led to the cre... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

24. Conservation of the Galapagos Islands
July 17, 2017

A Galapagos cruise is the opportunity to visit a part of the world many consider to be the most unique on the planet in terms of its landscape, ecosystem and wildlife. First made famous by their place in Charles Darwin's research for his Theory of Evolution, these extraordinary islands continue to play a vital role in our study of ecology and the natural world. The Conversation on Conservation One of the most pertinent subjects surrounding this part of the world is conservation. Numerous environmental issues have had (and continue to have) an impact on the habitat and wildlife of th... (read more)

Author: Desiree Michels

25. Lake Tanganyika Ecosystem Sensitive to Climate Change
August 10, 2016

Africa's Lake Tanganyika has more biodiversity than the Galapagos Islands. It is the world’s longest freshwater lake and is home to many of the colorful freshwater fish (called cichlids) that fill home aquariums. Hundreds of the species that call the lake home can only be found there. But those species are being threatened by human activities. Commercial fishing practices are playing a role but the biggest threat has been around longer than the fisheries, according to a study in PNAS that threat is climate change. Getting to the core Lake Tanganyika, which laps the border... (read more)

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