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The Galápagos Islands, the world's leading ecotourism destination, are often bypassed by birders due to the time and expense required to twitch the 28 endemic species. Since the corrupt and incompetent government of Ecuador, mass immigration, introduced plants, animals and diseases, and unsustainable hunting, fishing and tourism are systematically destroying the Islands' unique wildlife, now is the time to go.

Books about the Galápagos

Juan Freile & Robin Restall. Birds of Ecuador. Helm (Bloomsbury). (Forthcoming November 2016.) US | UK | FR | DE | CA | JP
Miles McMullan & Lelis Navarrete. Fieldbook of the Birds of Ecuador. Fundación Jocotoco 2013. Out of print, but available online at Bookread - must disable Adblock Plus on the page & register with Playster. You can read it for 30 days free, after which you have to pay $10/month! Unclear whether it can be downloaded for use after the 30 days expire. The only copies in American libraries listed in Worldcat are at Columbia U. & Stanford U., if you have access. Neither participates in Inter-Library Loan. US | UK
iJET Weekly Travel Intelligence Report - Ecuador. (PDF download from US
Andy Swash & Rob Still. Birds, Mammals, and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands: An Identification Guide

Andy Swash & Robert Still. Birds, Mammals & Reptiles of the Galápagos Islands. WorldTwitch 2001 Technical Innovation Award. This is an impressive little guide that anyone, birder or not, visiting the Galápagos should take along. Robert Still, a computer graphics expert, has seamlessly combined digitally enhanced photographs onto plates. This is the first field guide I have seen with thorough coverage of the endemic rice rats and lava lizards. 168 pages. Second edition 2006 (2000), with corrections and additional photos. Yale University Press: US | UK | DE | FR | CA || Helm: UK | DE | FR | CA

Galápagos Diary: A Complete Guide to the Archipelago's Birdlife, by Hermann Heinzel & Barnaby Hall. U. of California Press & Christopher Helm, 2001. 272 pages. 931 color photos. US | UK
A Guide to the Birds of the Galápagos Islands, by Isabel Castro & Antonia Phillips. Princeton U. Press, 1996. US | UK
Brinley J. Best, Tom Heijnen & Robert S.R. Williams. A Guide to Bird-Watching in Ecuador & the Galápagos Islands. 486 pages. Biosphere Publications, 1996. US | UK
Peter K. Grant. Ecology and Evolution of Darwin's Finches. 512 pages. 20 color illus. 117 halftones. 101 line illus. Princeton University Press. Revised edition, 1999. Updated edition taking into account new discoveries made in the 13 years since the original publication. US | UK
Jonathan Weiner. The Beak of the Finch. Pulitzer Prize winning book about the Grants' research on Darwin's Finches. 332 pages. Vintage Books 1995 (1994). US | UK
John Kricher. Galápagos. 256 pages. Smithsonian Natural History Series, 2002. US | UK
Princeton University Press reprint 2006: US | UK | DE | FR | CA
Michael D'Orso. Plundering Paradise: The hand of man on the Galápagos Islands. 368 pages. HarperCollins 2002. US | UK
Julian Fitter, David Fitter & David Hosking. Collins Safari Guide: Wildlife of the Galápagos. 254 pages, more than 400 color illustrations. Collins Safari Guides 2000 & Princeton U. Press 2002. US | UK
David L. Pearson, Les Beleskey, John Meyers & John O'Neill. Ecuador & Its Galápagos Islands: the Ecotravellers' Wildlife Guide. Academic Press, 2000. US | UK
Conley K. McMullen. Flowering Plants of the Galápagos. 384 pages. 383 color photos. Cornell U. Press, 1999. US | UK
Cleveland P. Hickman, Jr. & Todd L. Zimmerman. A Field Guide to the Crustaceans of the Galápagos. 156 pages. 230 color photos. Sugar Spring Press. December, 2000. US
Cleveland P. Hickman, Jr. & Yves Finet. A Field Guide to Marine Molluscs of the Galápagos. 150 pages. Color photos. Sugar Spring Press, 1999. US
Cleveland P. Hickman, Jr. A Field Guide to the Sea Stars & Echinoderms of the Galápagos. 83 pages. Color photos. Sugar Spring Press, 1998. US
Paul Humann & Ned Deloach. Reef Fish Identification: Galápagos. 240 pages. New World Publications 2003. US | UK | DE | FR | CA
Pierre Constant. Marine Life of the Galápagos: A Diver's Guide to the Fishes, Whales, Dolphins & Marine Invertebrates. 280 pages. Odyssey 2002. US | UK
Michael H. Jackson. Galápagos: A Natural History. U. of Calgary Press, 1994. US
David Horwell & Pete Oxford. Galápagos Wildlife. Bradt 2005. US | UK | DE | FR | CA
Jack Stein Grove & Robert J. Lavenberg. The Fishes of the Galápagos Islands. 863 pages. 521 illustrations, 151 in color. "The only comprehensive review of Galápagos fishes." Stanford University Press, 1997. US | UK
Ira L. Wiggins & Duncan M. Porter. The Flora of the Galápagos Islands. 998 pages. "The official text of flora investigations within the islands." Stanford University Press, 1971. US | UK
Barry Boyce. A Traveler's Guide to the Galápagos Islands. 280 pages. Hunter Publishing 2004. US | UK | DE | FR | CA
David Andrew. Lonely Planet - Watching Wildlife - Galápagos Islands. 160 pages. 2005. US | UK | DE | FR | CA
Rob Rachowieki & Danny Parmerlee. Lonely Planet - Ecuador & the Galápagos. 6th edition 2003. US | UK
7th edition, August 2006. US | UK | DE | FR | CA
Richard Keynes (ed.) Charles Darwin's Zoology Notes & Specimen Lists from the HMS Beagle. Transcription of Darwin's field notes, the majority of which had been unpublished. 464 pages. 2000. Cambridge U. Press. US | UK
Paul H. Barrett & Richard B. Freeman (eds.) The Works of Charles Darwin Vol 5: The Zoology of the Voyage of HMS Beagle, Under the Command of Captain Fitzroy, During the Years 1832-1836 (1838-1843): Part III Birds. 264 pages. NYU Press, 1987. US | UK
Charles Darwin. Janet Browne & Michael Neve (eds.) The Voyage of the Beagle: Journal of Researches into the Natural History and Geology of the Countries Visited During the Voyage of H.M.S. Beagle Round the World. 432 pages. Penguin Books, 1989. US | UK

Birds of the Galápagos

Dr. Fernando Ortiz-Crespo's Galápagos Pages

RIT Galápagos Pages

Sea Birds
Land Birds
Darwin's Finches

Birds of the Galápagos - Gary Feldman

Endangered Birds of the Galápagos

WWF Galápagos Slide Show by Wendy Kaveney

The Albatross Project Galápagos Study

"Finch DNA shows Darwin was right." Nicholas Wade, New York Times, 11 May 1999.

Past and present ornithology in Galápagos. By Hernán Vargas & Robert Bensted-Smith.

Ornithology Program of the Charles Darwin Research Station

Recently introduced flies may threaten Darwin's finches. Philornis downsi and Sarcodexia lambens. B. Tessel & S. Tebbich, Ibis 144(3):445-451 (July 2002).

"Evolution of Galápagos Birds". 6th Clark Ornithology Symposium. 19-23 March 2003. Ohio.

Galápagos Maps

Map of the Galápagos Islands (Lonely Planet)

Map of Ecuador (UN - pdf)

Galápagos Organizations

Charles Darwin Foundation, Inc.

Index of Galápagos related articles and publications on the Charles Darwin Foundation website

Charles Darwin Research Station

The Galápagos Coalition

Galápagos Conservation Trust

Parque Nacional Galápagos

Sea Shepherd

Galápagos News

Sea Shepherd Targets Galápagos Security as a Priority. 1 March 2004. "What we are seeing is the rapid Hawaiianization of the Galapagos. The push is on to build hotels, dock cruise ships and to bring hundreds of thousands of tourists and tens of thousands of permanent residents to these islands that many people throughout the world actually believe are uninhabited. It is a race between developers and fishing companies to see who will destroy the islands first."

Population Migration Threatens the Galápagos. By Captain Paul Watson. 27 February 2004. "Policing the National Park Marine Reserve has been difficult because of increasing population pressure, increased illegal fishing, increased development and corruption. At the same time there is a plan to Hawaiianize the islands and speculators are looking at building major hotel resorts and these expensive resorts will not be on the 2.5% set aside for human settlement."

Sea Shepherd updates, 12/2003: The Sirenian has completed her annual dry-docking in Ecuador and is back on patrol in the Galápagos. The Farley Mowat is in drydock in Seattle until the end of January and will depart for the Galápagos in early February.

Captured poacher's boat brings $30,000 to the Galápagos National Park. Sea Shepherd, 10 January 2004.

Raid on Poacher's Camp Results in Large Seizure in the Galápagos. Sea Shepherd, 6 January 2004.

Immigration puts pressure on pristine Galápagos. By Amy Taxin, Reuters, 22 October 2003.

Online in Ecuador? It's taking awhile. New York Times, 2 January 2003. It rarely makes economic sense to do business in such a corrupt country. A cybercafé in the Galápagos paid $50,000 to set up satellite Internet access, then had to pay Ecuadorian officials $300,000 in bribes.

21 March 2003: Sea Shepherd's Sirenian nabs another poacher in the Galápagos.

18 September 2002: Sirenian catches poaching vessel in Galápagos Marine Reserve.

Captain Paul Watson's June 2002 report -- more bad news, as the poachers continue to run amok with full support of the corrupt government of Ecuador.

Study says oil spill ravaged iguanas. By Andrew C. Revkin. New York Times, 6 June 2002. The population of Marine Iguanas on Santa Fé declined from 25,000 to 10,000 after the Galápagos oil spill.

Ecuador Improves for 2001! (Moves up past Bolivia to rank as the second most corrupt country in Latin America -- Transparency International)

Galápagos dolphins die in tangled fishing nets. Reuters, 5 June 2002. Illegal fishing obviously remains out of control.

Ecuadorian tuna industry threatens "tomarse Galápagos por la fuerza" [to take the Galápagos by force]. El Comercio, 10 December 2001.

Ecuadorian court rules against illegal fishing vessels seized by Sea Shepherd. 25 October 2001.

Sea Shepherd representative released from jail but ordered to leave Ecuador. 10 September 2001.

Ecuador thugs (i.e., police) arrest Sea Shepherd representative. ENS, 31 August 2001. Illegal shark finners and long-liners go free.

Corrupt Ecuadorian Navy orders Sea Shepherd out of the Galágapos. ENS, 30 August 2001. While the Admiral's cronies continue to loot the marine sanctuary.

Ecuadorian Navy seizes Sea Shepherd vessel: Sea Shepherd repeatedly catches illegal fishermen, and the corrupt Ecuadorian authorities release them. 28 August 2001 Update.

"Can the Galápagos Survive Vice Admiral Vega? A portrait of corruption." Sea Shepherd, 5 June 2001.

"Ecuador Military Muzzles U.S. Galápagos Activist." Sea Shepherd, 4 June 2001.

Galápagos News Updates from the Charles Darwin Foundation, Inc.

5 Galápagos tour boats certified (14 December 2000)

Galápagos Now. By Susan McGrath, Audubon Magazine, March-April 2001.

Lava Gull Threatened by Galápagos Oil Spill (BirdLife International, 24 January 2001)

Galápagos Journal: Isles Rich in Species Are Origin of Much Tension, by Larry Rohter. New York Times, 28 January 2001.

Galápagos Oil Spill: Technical Report, 16 February 2001

Where Darwin Mused, Strife Over Ecosystem, by Larry Rohter. New York Times, 27 December 2000.

"Fishermen gut Galápagos research center." ENN, 21 November 2000

Galápagos Tourism

International Galápagos Tour Operators Association

SmartVoyager® - Certification program for Galápagos tour boats

Ecuadorline - Galapagos tour information

La Hostería Isabela del Mar

Red Mangrove Adventure Inn

Hotel La Casa de Marita

Scuba Iguana Dive Center

See the WorldTwitch directory of birding tours and lodges in the Americas for links to operators of birding tours to the Galápagos.

Copyright © 1992-2012 John Wall