Charles Darwin Galapagos Islands

charles darwin galapagos islands

Charles Darwin Galapagos Islands Celebration for the 150 years of the publication of The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection


November 24th 1859 marks another major celebration in the Galapagos Islands on 2009.

150 years ago, Charles Darwin published the first edition of "On the origin of Species by means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life."

The book considered generally as his masterpiece is the finished product of years of careful observations, many of them gathered during his epic voyage on board the HMS Beagle, including specimens and observations collected in the Galapagos Islands in 1835.

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By 1837, Darwin opened his notebooks on the transmutation of species, and by 1841 he had his first manuscript. But he left this work virtually static and dedicated to other subjects of study.

By 1858, Charles Darwin was decided to publish his work, having shown it to a minute number of friends.

A letter received that year, from a fellow naturalist, Alfred Russell Wallace, with similar ideas prompted Darwin to read his and Wallace paper at the Linnaean Society in London, between June and July 1858.

When Charles Darwin took his book for publishing in 1859, his editor told him "next time write about pigeons, a subject everyone is interested in".

In fact, the 1859 first edition of 1250 copies was sold out the very same day it came out. It has been in print ever since, and it is considered one of the single most revolutionary ideas of thinking, and it has affected our comprehension of living beings.

Charles Darwin Bicentennial

With their historical significance in the development of the evolutionary theory, the Galapagos Islands offer an unparalleled venue to celebrate Darwin's bicentennial with the Second World Summit on Evolution, hosted by the San Francisco de Quito University (USFQ) in Ecuador, which took place from August 22 to 26, 2009.

The Charles Darwin Galapagos Islands summit brought together experts and students from widely different areas of evolutionary biology and focused on recent research and new advances in the understanding of evolution and the diversity of life.

During the 4 day meeting there were 40 minute talks by around 30 guest speakers, with a total attendance of 150 participants.

On the third day, conference participants were able to attend guided tours at San Cristobal Island with visits to both terrestrial and marine environments.

This Summit was planned as part of a broader program designed to teach evolution to students and the general public that is taking place throughout 2009 in mainland Ecuador.

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Charles Darwin Galapagos Islands New Royal Mail Stamps

charles darwin stamps

The Royal Mail of the UK has issued ten colorful stamps to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of his book On the Origin of Species.

Charles Darwin's ideas triggered a revolution in the understanding of how species evolve.

The brilliance of his thinking is symbolized in the unique design of the stamps, the jigsaw shape suggests how Darwin was able to draw on his different areas of study to formulate groundbreaking new ideas.

Royal Mail has also produced a special sheet of four stamps illustrating the unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands that includes the Flightless Cormorant, Giant Tortoise, Floreana Mockingbird and Marine Iguana and which builds up into a contemporary Map of Galapagos Islands with the key species Darwin studied in 1835.

Recommended Reading

Ecuador & Galapagos (Insight Guides). Click to order from Amazon

Ecuador & Galapagos (Insight Guides)

With 250 photos and tons of great information, this is an essential addition to your pre-Ecuador and -Galapagos reading!

There are better guides if you are only interested in the islands, but for a combination trip taking in Ecuador as well, it's hard to beat.


Birds, Mammals, and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands. Click to order from Amazon

Birds, Mammals, and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands

Small enough to fit into your pocket, yet containing comprehensive information and pictures of all the species you will encounter in the islands, this book is a must-have for nature lovers.

Let's face it, Galapagos is largely about the wildlife. This book will NOT disappoint, and you'll have a great memento of your time with the seals, penguins and tortoises!


Galapagos: The Islands That Changed the World. Click to order from Amazon

Galapagos: The Islands That Changed the World

Definitely NOT a tourist's guide, but if you're like me, and find the history and geography of the islands irresistible, then this is a title you ought to invest in.

Stunningly illustrated, and painstakingly researched, those of you who have been there will be enchanted again -- and those of you who have not will begin planning your trip!


Moon Spotlight Galapagos. Click to order from Amazon

Moon Spotlight Galapagos Islands

If you're a seasoned Galapagos regular, then you will probably prefer something weightier.

But for first-timers looking for simple, down-to-earth advice on where to go, what to see and the best shopping and eating on the islands, this is the book for you.

Small, well-priced, and reliable!


Galapagos: Islands Born of Fire. Click to order from Amazon

Galapagos: Islands Born of Fire

The 10th anniversary edition of this photographer's tour of the Galapagos Islands is a stunning book, worthy of anybody's coffee table.

This is a perfect post-trip talking point -- a great way to remember what you've seen, and spread the word amongst your envious friends!


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