Isabela Island

Mar 21, 2018 - National Geographic Islander

We left our peaceful anchorage off Fernandina at 0500 and navigated east to anchor just before breakfast in Urbina Bay at the base of Volcan Alcedo. This area was uplifted dramatically in either 1953 or 1954 and on our morning hikes we could still see evidence that the ocean once covered the trails where we walked. There were encrustations of tube worms and several large coral heads, all high and dry and slowly disintegrating. What we enjoyed most however this morning were nearly a dozen giant tortoises of all sizes that we were surprised and delighted to find lumbering slowly along the sandy paths among the lush vegetation behind the landing beach. It had apparently rained hard the day before and all the terrestrial critters were on the move! Land iguanas were mating, yellow warblers, finches and mocking birds were singing and the tortoises were on their way somewhere - busily walking, to where? – we did not know!

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About the Author

Lynn Fowler

Expedition Leader

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, and one of seven children, Lynn grew up in various university towns where her father was a professor of physics. Lynn obtained her B.A. in biology from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, followed by a master’s degree in zoology from the University of Florida, which encompassed a study of marine turtles in Costa Rica. She arrived in Galápagos in 1978 and became one of the first female naturalist guides working for the Galápagos National Park.

About the Photographer

Walter Perez

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Walter was born in a very small town on the mainland of Ecuador. His first trip to the Galápagos was when he was 12 years old, visiting friends and aunt, who had moved to the islands. From the first moment he saw the Islands, he fell in love with them and knew then where his future home would be.

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