A selection of pictures showing plants in their natural habitats....

Click on the thumbnails for enlarged versions of the pictures and the accompanying remarks

The Galapagos Islands are a group of 19 volcanic islands in the  Pacific Ocean, owned by Ecuador. They are located on the equator about 600 miles (1,000 km) west of the mainland of Ecuador. The islands range in size from mere rocks in the ocean to the largest, Isabela (Albemarle), which is approximately 82 miles (132 km) long. The highest point of the Galapagos Islands is Mount Azul, on Isabela Island, at 5,541 feet (1,689 m).

They were discovered in 1535 by the bishop of Panama, Tomás de Berlanga, while he was en route to Peru. Their history has included the Inca (pottery fragments have been found at several sites), Spanish voyagers in the 16th century, pirates in the late 17th century and whaling and seal hunting in the early 19th century.

Location map of Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands
The islands became famous in 1835 thanks to the naturalist Charles Darwin who studied their unusual fauna when developing his ideas on natural selection. Some of the islands are now an international nature reserve.

Although not renowned as a cactus habitat, at least three genera of cacti plus some other succulents can be found on the islands.

Ecuadorian flag
Brachycereus nesioticus Brachycereus nesioticus
Opuntia sp.
Land Iguana with Sesuvium sp. Sesuvium sp.
Galapagos Wildlife

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