Galapagos – Day 5

Urbina Bay - Isabella Island Tortoises and a Nap

Isabella Island is a large island, made up of 6 fused shield volcanoes that give it its sea horse shape so there are different things to see in different locations on the island.   Our first stop of the day was Urbina Bay, where we took a short walk accompanied only by cell phones.

Most of the flowering plants in the Galapagos were introduced by humans.  On this walk, we saw two flowers that are native to the Galapagos Islands. 

Yellow Cordia (Cordia lutea) is native to the Galapagos, but also is found in mainland Ecuador and Peru, as well as the Marquesas Islands.   

Yellow Cordia

Darwin’s cotton (Gossypium darwinii) is endemic to the Galapagos, meaning the species is not just native, it is not found anywhere else.  This picture shows the flowers closed with a reddish tinge, but when opened they are predominantly yellow.  They look rather like a hibiscus, to which they are related.

Darwin’s Cotton

This walk also brought us up close to our first giant tortoises.  The guides told us that they were the inspiration for E.T. in the movie, and it’s easy to see how that is true.

Giant Tortoise

Also spotted:  Yellow Warbler and Land Iguana.

Yellow Warbler
Land Iguana

The afternoon, we just stayed on the ship and napped.  The afternoon hike was a uphill speed march to an overlook, or a short zodiac ride in Tagus Cove.  So no pictures. 

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