Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Galapagos Islands are rich in diverse flora & fauna. Over 400 fish species, unique birds, endemic and native Galapagos wildlife does make travellers feel like being part of National Geographic documentary.
Some interesting facts on Galapagos Islands
90% of Galapagos Island is national park
The ‘Enchanted Isles’ is located off Ecuador coast by approximately 970 Km (600 miles). Through a Presidential decree 6 decades ago, the National Park had been set up. The surrounding waters are referred to as UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The Ecuador government protects both marine reserve and the park and is mostly uninhabited. Visitors are charged an entrance fee to enter the islands. Roughly 3% of the land areas external to the national park are inhabited by about 30,000 people.
Number of islands is a debate
There are in total dozens of islets and 19 islands. Continuous volcanic activity has been changing constantly the island’s shape with new formations sinking or emerging.
The island in the last one hundred years has witnessed several volcanic eruptions, with the recent one being Sierra Negra volcano eruption in 2018 on Isabela Island. This has raised concerns pertaining to pink iguana species there.
Colourful seabirds (boobies) of three varieties are found here: Boobies are part of Sluidae (gannet) group and are popular among all seabirds. This is because of some of their curious habits as well as colourful webbed feet. The red-footed boobies make use of bushes and branches to make nesting areas. Nazca boobies and blue-footed boobies nest on the ground, a bit further inland. Their feet pigmentation is due to their unique diets.
This place is considered tropical as the island hugs the equator. It has a unique climate due to the intersection of different air and marine currents. Along Isabella’s northern coast, an archipelago piece is perhaps the only place in where you can find penguins in the Northern hemisphere in its natural habitat. Penguins in the Galapagos are stated to be the 2nd smallest of its species, observed typically on Fernandina and Isabela’s western islands. Few colonies are found in Floreana and central islands.
Galapagos giant tortoise
An average tortoise is known to survive for over a century. You can find giant tortoise here in their natural habitat, something quite unique.
Galapagos Islands are really interesting and can be visited at any time of the year.