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The Galápagos

The History of the Famous Pacific Islands and Their Unique Ecosystem
Narrated by: Jim D. Johnston
Length: 1 hr and 41 mins
Categories: History, World

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Publisher's Summary

A white seabird with a teal beak dappled with pink and orange colors and a set of apple-red webbed feet hops from one branch to another, with all the grace of a toddler learning to take his first steps. Not far from this charming bird, the red-footed booby, a majestic lizard the size of a plump house cat with coral-pink scales and black stripes, scuttles across the earth and ducks underneath a shrub for some much-needed shade. Feet away from the aptly-named pink iguana, a scolopendra centipede lies in wait. The long, slender insect, about the size of a large twig, has a chocolate-colored, ribbed shell for a body, its fiery orange-tipped legs piercing into the sand as it scours its surroundings for unsuspecting lava lizards and rice rats. Unaware of the impending bloodbath, a pocket-sized penguin, no more than 19 inches long, emerges from the crystal-clear waters and splashes about with its stubby flippers before waddling onto the beach. 

These are only a handful of the seemingly whimsical creatures that reside in the gorgeous Galápagos Islands, a fantastic paradise of an archipelago brimming with life and unexpected heterogeneity. Come nightfall, this natural nirvana is equally, if not more disarmingly, spellbinding.

Unperturbed by the poisons of pollution, the charcoal-black canvas is almost completely dotted with dazzling constellations from both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, a mesmerizing panorama unique only to this beautiful nest of islands.

On the surface, the Galápagos could have been plucked out of the imagination of a vastly creative author of adventure fiction or perhaps, a starry-eyed spinner of fairy tales. But of course, the astounding archipelago is indeed real, a picturesque product of Mother Nature's endless mastery, and the archipelago has become almost synonymous with British naturalist Charles Darwin, who produced several groundbreaking theories about natural selection and evolution based on his time there. 

Darwin discovered that the mockingbird species varied from each island in the Galápagos, which served as the catalyst for his theory on natural selection, published nearly 30 years later in his 1859 book - On the Origin of Species

While Darwin’s theories are taken for granted today by scientists and most people, Darwin had to overcome strong criticism and the earlier scientific rejection of similar concepts such as the transmutation of species. Given the fame Darwin brought the islands with his legendary work, it is no surprise people continue to be fascinated by the islands. 

Hollywood has profited from the beauty of these islands, time and again, with the Galápagos appearing as a scenic backdrop in multiple films and TV shows over the years (the most notable of them being the 2003 period war-drama Master & Commander.

The Galápagos: The History of the Famous Pacific Islands and Their Unique Ecosystem examines the geography of the islands, the different species there, and famous events that took place in the Galápagos.

©2019 Charles River Editors (P)2019 Charles River Editors

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