A local characater on Fernandina looks forward to a good nights sleep when the tourists disappear onto their Galapagos boat.
A little history
The islands, officially known as ‘Archipélago de Colón’ (1892), were visited by Charles Darwin in 1835 and the inter-island variations of the giant tortoises and finches (small birds! ) inspired his revolutionary and controversial ‘The Origin of the Species by Natural Selection’, Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.
Since then the islands, 1, 000km (620 miles) off the South American coast and claimed by Ecuador in 1832, have hosted mainly fishermen, whalers, pirates and prisoners, only evolving into a National Park in 1959, precisely 100 years after Darwin’s publication.
Sally Lightfoot crabs
A Sally Lightfoot crab and her technicolour dreamcoat.
The geology of the Galapagos Islands is essentially that of rocky basalt islands formed from shield volcanoes which have risen up to 10, 000 ft from the sea bed due to continental plate boundary movements. Also fissure eruptions of these volcanoes created other, flatter islands.
Still very much apparent is the fact that the islands are one of the most volcanically active places on earth, a strange backdrop to the unique wildlife on show.
Neolithic standing stones? Nope, the remains of a shipwreck.