The Galapagos archipelago is situated at a point where major ocean currents converge, mingling nutrient rich cool waters from the south, warm currents from the north, and a deep cold current from the west. The convergence of ocean currents has combined flora and fauna from contrasting environments and given rise to unique marine species. Nearly twenty percent of marine life is endemic, found nowhere else on earth. This level of endemism is rare for marine species which tend to migrate and intermingle to a much larger degree than terrestrial species.
The Galapagos are home to the world’ s only marine iguana and the most northernly living peguin. Coral beds share the same waters as fur seals. The Galapagos is one of the only places where pelagic species such as tunas, manta rays, and hammerhead sharks can be seen close to shore. No other site in the world showcases such a diversity of marine life forms.
Additionally, the Galapagos geological and biological processes have helped create a high variety of habitats relative to other marine areas in the eastern Pacific. Coastal areas include vertical cliffs, sandy beaches, rocky shores, mangroves, coral reefs, lagoons, and hypersaline panne habitats. Submarine mountains, plateaus, ridges and valleys provide habitat to an array of marine communities, while the open ocean waters attract stocks of pelagic fish.
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11.15.13 November 15, 2013 Following the discovery of a dead marine iguana at Tortuga... More >
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