small ships have excellent nature and wildlife programs including
knowledgeable expedition leaders to take passengers on hikes or in
zodiacs to find wildlife in the area. marine-iguana. The Galapagos wildlife is unique in the world, the
exotic animals that can only be seen in the enchanted islands. Galapagos
wildlife is one of the major attractions these islands have to offer to
its thousands of visitors each year.
Galapagos were made famous with the
publication of Charles Darwin's The Origin of Species in 1859, in which
he proposed natural selection as a mechanism for evolution.
Darwin set off to see if there were anymore peculiarities. They were not
hard to find. He started with the vegetation. Of the 193 samples he
collected, 100 of these were native only to the Galapagos. The birds of
Galapagos were also fascinating. They were tame and seemed to have
no fear of man.
Darwin identified twenty-six species of birds. Of these, twenty-five of
them were found nowhere else on earth. Thirteen species of the
aboriginal birds were finches.
The reptiles of the Galapagos also intrigued Darwin.
Here the reptile to mammal ratio was as it had been when dinosaurs ruled
the planet. There were giant, deaf tortoises with strange shells that
seemed adapted to the type of food they ate. Large lizards sunning
themselves on coastal rocks after swimming in the ocean for their meal
of seaweed. Again, nowhere else in the world were there such creatures.