News archive for 2017

  • Preventing Extinctions – Is Gene Drive the Answer? | November 20th, 2017

    Island Conservation and partners have been working with the Floreana community in seeing how invasive rodents which have driven with many of the island’s species off the island or even to extinction can be restored – more here

  • The Return of the Floreana Tortoise ??? | November 11th, 2017

    Credit Andrew Miller

    Can the Floreana Tortoise return to the island from whence it came?  Remnant populations on other islands have some Floreana genes so the potential is there – find out more

  • Nazca Booby Declining Numbers & Loss of Sardine Diet | November 5th, 2017

    Wake Forest University

    A study by Wake Forest University suggests that the reduction in sardines found in Galapagos waters has had a dramatic effect on the Nazca booby and its reproductive success rate – find out more 

  • Lava Java – How Coffee is Aiding Forest Restoration | October 26th, 2017

    Credit Matt Rogers

    Galapagos grown coffee is helping with a project on Santa Cruz  to restore a scalesia forest – very important for the many species that rely on the trees more here

  • Epigenetics, Finches & Rapid Environmental Changes | October 15th, 2017

    Credit: McNew et al, BMC Evolutionary Biology, 2017

    Epigenetics could explain how rapid environmental changes resulting from ubanisation in Galapagos have caused finches to adapt to an urban environment find out more

  • Shocking Find of Illegally Caught Sharks | October 4th, 2017

    The Chinese ship discovered in the Galapagos Marine Sanctuary with thousands of sharks aboard was a ‘mothership’ which collects fish from smaller fishing boats – find out more here

  • Oh So Blue! | September 26th, 2017

    Island Conservation

    The more blue the better is the case with the amazing Blue-footed Booby – get the full story here

  • BBC Documentary – Galapagos Islands | September 18th, 2017

    Galapagos Islands: A Little World Within Itself  – listen to this doco here on life in Galapagos, the wonders to be found there and the challenges that face them. Narrated by Charles Darwin’s great, great granddaughter.

  • Floreana Restoration Project – A Paradise in Waiting | September 4th, 2017

    Credit Andy Kraemer

    The eradication of invasive rodents and feral cats on Floreana will mean that extirpated species such as the Floreana Mockingbird and Floreana Giant Tortoise can be reintroduced to the island – more about this inspiring project here

  • Darwin’s Thinking – Key Turning Point | August 26th, 2017

    Visits to the Zoological Society of London and help from an ornithologist there in identifying Galapagos finches topped of with him seeing interaction between an ape and her keeper changed Darwin’s thinking forever – find out more here

  • In Charles Darwin’s Footsteps | August 11th, 2017

    Federico Rios Escobar NY Times

    A tale of a land based holiday in Galapagos  which will bring back memories for many – from the NY Times

  • Snakes Alive | August 7th, 2017

    Fernandina Snake. Credit: Manny Barrera

    Galapagos snakes in a second part of of a project run by the Park, Island Conservation and Luis Ortiz-Catedral of New Zealand’s Massey University  are being studied to better understand the number of species and distribution more

  • Shark Monitoring by Video | August 7th, 2017

    Credits: Pelayo Salinas-de-León/Charles Darwin Foundation

    “These islands are a key ecosystem likely connecting populations of migratory sharks across the islands and mainland of the Eastern Tropical Pacific, and this information is vital for understanding the role of the Galápagos Marine Reserve in protecting threatened shark populations” says Dr. Salinas-de-León – find out more

  • The Flightless Cormorant | July 23rd, 2017

    Photo: Caroline Duffie Judy

    The world’s only flightless cormorant lives in Galapagos – find out why the species cannot fly here

  • New Book on an Expedition that proved Darwin’s Theories | July 12th, 2017

    An expedition in 1905 about which little has been written up to now validated the work of Darwin and is said to be one of the most important expeditions in the history of  evolutionary and conservation science

    Collecting evolution : the Galápagos expedition that vindicated Darwin

  • Tropical Penguins Are Endangered | July 9th, 2017

    Photo: Daniela Vilema

    The docile and gentle Galapagos penguin is threatened by climate change and other impacts on its habitat. Warmer waters mean they are having to swim further and further in search of food which puts them at risk of larger ocean going predators. There is a silver lining …. more

  • Galapagos Godzilla | June 11th, 2017

    Photo: Alamy

    The marine iguana had been seen as close to a demonic monster by early Galapagos visitors and Darwin referred to them as hideous-looking creatures – this characterisation was at odds with the placid nature of these herbivores.  Marine iguana studies have provided insights into the processes of diversification and selection that drive the generation of species in Galapagos more

  • Fin-Fish Study to Help Management of Fishing in the Galapagos Marine Reserve | June 3rd, 2017

    Photo: Anna Schuhbauer, Charles Darwin Foundation

    Fishing is the least managed of Galapagos economic activities and there are signs of over exploitation of fish stocks. Studies of young fish are being undertaken to provide information to help manage fish stocks sustainably. Interestingly fish can be aged by fish otoliths, or ear bones and growth rates established more


  • Triggerfish, Pencil Urchins & Hogfish | May 25th, 2017

    Photo: Fat Fish Movies

    The mid level predator, the triggerfish has been tracked in Galapagos waters and has been shown to be vital to coastal eco-systems.  Scientific experiments have shown that there is a three level trophic cascade from the triggerfish to pencil urchins to benthic algae  – more

  • How Complex Life Came to Galapagos | May 15th, 2017

    NASA / ISS

    Find out how the amazing life forms evolved on the volcanic islands of the Galapagos archipelago and how the islands themselves came into existence  – here

  • Encounters at the Charles Darwin Research Station | May 11th, 2017

    Photo: Paola Díaz, Charles Darwin Research Station.

    Find out about the many wonderful exhibits and experiences at the Charles Darwin Research Station at Puerto Ayora. The Station which plays a very important role, in collabaration with the Galapagos National Park, in the conservation of the Galapagos islands has 18 active research projects underway from marine conservation to land bird research.

  • Galapagos Penguin Chicks Who Won’t Leave Home | April 30th, 2017

    Godfrey Merlen, Galapagos National Park

    Galapagos penguin chicks have been found to stick around their parents demanding food even though they are old enough to feed themselves – more on this human like behaviour here

  • Galapagos Life – a Movie | April 18th, 2017

    Kum-Kum Bhavnani

    Galapagos Life is a movie that profiles the people who live in the astoundingly beautiful archipelago and outlines how it is possible for conservation efforts to exist in a systematic manner over a whole region.  A crowd funding campaign has been started to complete production for the film  find our more here

  • The Super Amazing Blue-Footed Booby | April 2nd, 2017

    Photo Tui De Roy/Minden Pictures

    Check out this great piece on the blue-footed booby with lots of fascinating tales about this most photogenic of birds

  • Giant Tortoises Once Widespread Across the Globe | March 30th, 2017

    From Darwin’s 1890’s book on his Beagle adventure. Illustration: C. Darwin, 1890. View

    Giant Tortoises once existed in the Americas, Eurasia & Africa with species in northern India & Pakistan growing to the size of a small car – more intriguing reading here

  • Giant Tortoises Back From the Brink | March 25th, 2017

    Jane Braxton Little, CC BY-NC-ND

    The Giant Tortoise Restoration Initiative is launched to continue and build on the work of the Galapagos National Park in the restoration of tortoise populations  and their habitat after their numbers were reduced by up to 90% over the past 200 years. Image  CC BY-NC-ND

  • Tourism Operators Going Green | February 8th, 2017

    Eric Mohl/Horizon Writers Group

    Find out about positive steps being taken by some tourist operators to mitigate the effects of tourism in the Galapagos archipelago

  • The Plight of the Frigatebirds | February 8th, 2017

    Age Fotostock/Alamy

    It is fly or sink when the frigatebird is flying for up to a month or more over water  – find out why here

  • The Pinzón Tortoise in Island Restorations | February 8th, 2017

    Rory Stansbury /Island Conservation

    The Pinzón Tortoise is highlighted in this story of island restorations 

  • Exploring the Depths in Galapagos Waters | February 8th, 2017

    Video showing a National Geographic team go deep in a submarine to see wonderful marine life some of which has never been seen before

  • Tourism and Threats to Galapagos | February 8th, 2017

    DW/M Marek

    Interesting article on how tourists can unwittingly threaten, amongst other things, the biodiversity of the Galapagos islands

  • Amazing Lichens | February 8th, 2017

    Charles Darwin Foundation/F.Bungartz

    Charles Darwin researcher tells why is he so fascinated by lichens

  • The El Niño – La Niña cycle Effects on the Marine Ecosystem | February 8th, 2017

    Image: Jon Witman

    Galapagos waters and the ecological drama of climate change – the full story here

  • The Origins of Galapagos Biodiversity – 1.6 million years ago | February 8th, 2017

    Credit: University of Colorado

    When some of the islands forming the Galapagos archipelago emerged and began blocking the Equitorial Undercurrent EUC a biological explosion began with the cold nutrient rich water fueling marine productivity –  found out more here

  • Galapagos Penguin From Above | January 28th, 2017

    Photo: Flicker user Gregory ‘Slobirdr’ Smith

    Check out how Galapagos penguins camouflage themselves in the water

  • Galapagos Matters | January 15th, 2017

    The latest issue of Galapagos Matters is here

  • Land Iguanas are Seed Dispersers | January 15th, 2017

    Along with giant tortoises land iguanas are found to disperse seeds in Galapagos, replacing mammals which are not naturally found on the islands. This function is critical to the biodiversity balance of Galapagos – more on this story

  • Sperm Whale Clans – Dialects & Population Shifts | January 4th, 2017

    Photo: Dominica Sperm Whale Project

    Research shows that by studying sperm whale dialects – whole clans can be traced moving from one ocean basin to another. Individuals were identified by bite marks and natural differences in their tails – more here