Galapagos Unique Animals and Plants

by Rachel Lean
(Toledo Ohio)

What animals and plants can only be found in Galapagos? Why are they not found anywhere else?

Your Answer


Some Galapagos animals and plants are unique in the world because they evolved or adapted well only in this Archipelago and nowhere else in the planet.

Here are some endemic (unique) Galapagos Animals:

Galapagos Marine Iguana: These reptiles are called: "Imps of darkness". With such name, no wonder the marine iguana is the most unusual.

Endemic to Galapagos, they are the only sea-going lizards in the world.

Galapagos Penguins: are similar to the Magellanic penguins except that the black band in the Galapagos penguin is thinner and they are smaller in size. Galapagos penguins are the smallest in the world.

Galapagos Giant Tortoises: These are the Galapagos animals that gave the official name to these set of beautiful Islands.

Galapagos giant tortoises keep growing for 30 or 40 years to almost 5 feet and weigh about 500 pounds.

It is worth mentioning that no one knows exactly how long Galapagos tortoises live, but it seems they can easily reach 150 years.

Galapagos Fur Sea Lion: (incorrectly called fur seal, as there are no true seals in Galapagos) is an endemic species to the Islands, and prefers rocky coastlines.

Galapagos Plants


The Galapagos Plants are amongst the most incredible examples of Island evolutionary biology.

They possibly started with seeds carried by the winds and stopped by the newly formed Islands.

There are approximately "560 species" of plants living in Galapagos, from which about a third are endemic (unique) to the Islands.

Where else could you find giant prickly pear cactus? Where else could you find an endemic cherry-like tomato? Where else could you find a member of the daisy family that locally evolved into 17 different species (genus Scalesia)?

This is the botanical magic of the Galapagos Islands, which is certainly crucial for the survival of all living things here.

The isolation, both from continental South America and each other, has given each Island in Galapagos a unique wildlife characteristic.

More About Galapagos


Galapagos Animals

Galapagos Plants

Galapagos Giant Tortoise

Galapagos Islands Birds

Galapagos Location

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