Classified as a vulnerable species, these unique iguanas are only found in the Galapagos. Males, like this one, may turn green and red during breeding season. Marine Iguanas swim in water, feeding on seaweed and can dive as deep as 10 meters!
Dangerously addicted to fresh water, many birds, including the mockingbirds of the Galapagos, will aggressively seek out open water bottles and other water sources they find. This Hood Mockingbird is a vulnerable species and is a rarity in that Charles Darwin never saw this bird during his time on the islands.
The wildlife of the Galapagos is well known for sporting unique colour combinations and the Sally Lightfoot Crab is among the most colourful. This is one species that isn’t unique to the islands, but it is found everywhere in the Galapagos! It also can be found along the coast of South and Central America.
These whimsical birds mate on the Galapagos Islands and put on quite a display. Couples will do an intricate ‘dance’ by walking in unison to solidify their bond. One way to tell males and females apart is their eyes. Males have tiny black pupils and females have much larger pupils, so the male is on the right in this picture!
Frigate birds are another great bird sighting in the Galapagos. They mate and nest in the stunted trees found on the islands, with the Males inflating their bright red throat pouches in an effort to attract a mate.
The most famous resident of the Galapagos Islands is this giant tortoise named Lonesome George. While there are tortoises on many islands in the Galapagos, each island’s species is genetically unique. George is the last known member of his kind, the sole surviving tortoise from Pinta Island. But don’t give up hope yet; scientists believe a partner may still be hiding somewhere, possibly on the expansive Isabela Island.
Unlike their seaweed-eating marine cousins, the usually yellow-orange coloured Land Iguanas of the Galapagos survive by munching on prickly pear cactus. They have spikes on their backs and bumpy looking heads. These Iguanas are also listed as a vulnerable species and when Charles Darwin saw them he commented that he thought they were some of the ugliest and stupidest looking creatures he’d ever seen!
An endangered species, the Galapagos Sea Lion is one of the most memorable animals you may enjoy hanging out with on a visit to the Galapagos. They’re curious by nature and will commonly zip by and check you out whilst you swim or snorkel in the water. They’re similar to, but smaller than, the sea lions of California.
Just like the Galapagos tortoises that are unique to each island, the lava lizards of the Galapagos are also unique on each island. Some are brown, some are red and some are dark in colour, depending on the type of soil or lava found on the island they live on.
The Nazca Booby bird may lack the coloured feet of its blue or red-footed relatives, but they’re another bird species who rely on the Galapagos Islands for breeding. If you’re a Nazca Booby baby, just hope that you’re not a twin, as these birds will only raise one chick at a time and discard any extras!