People go to the Galapagos to encounter its unique and friendly wildlife. We were surprised to see this owl right beside our trail in the middle of the day. With most of the islands unoccupied and protected by being within a national park, many of the animals are not afraid of humans.
We visited the Galapagos during Christmas week, at the end of the dry season. These succulents, similar to ice plants, were in bloom.
It seems strange to have cacti so close to the ocean. The climate in the Galapagos is obviously drier than other Pacific islands, such as those in Hawaii or Polynesia.
The most common animals on the islands are iguanas and birds. The iguanas hiss and spit.
This is a swallow-tailed gull, one of the many species of birds that populate the Galapagos. We visited one island that had 250,000 birds. Darwin observed differences between the birds of the different islands, particularly the mockingbirds, which helped him deduce the principles of evolution.