Hi and welcome to almost Friday! I hope you are not sick of animal pictures from South America yet because I have more than a few to share with you today along with what I hope are a few fun facts! I have used the turtle emoji a ton in the past few weeks but to describe very, very different animals – the first is the Galapagos Green Turtle and the second is the Galapagos Giant Tortoise but neither of which are really green.
Let’s first start with the Galápagos Green Turtle that I actually did not officially know the name of until I got home – I called them sea turtles for an entire week but at least everyone knew what I was talking about! The first few times we saw them they were floating on the surface of the ocean, only looking like I shadow blob, so it was not until we got in the water with them – an opportunity my family and I had a few occasions – that we were able to really admire their beauty! Here are a few shots I was able to capture on my underwater camera:
You can see my brother in the two photos above that where he is filming the sea turtles with his GoPro. I have more than 200 clips to go through and while I am comfortable with most of the Adobe Creative suite editing film is definitely not one of my strong suits so this will be a fun learning experience. (Though I have to saw rewatching penguins swimming back and forth is pretty fun). Take a look at the first clip I edited to give you a sense of just what it as like to swim with them!
These photos of different tortoises were taken at a few locations, the Centro de Crianza de Tortugas Terrestres, El Chato Tortoise Reserve, and the Charles Darwin Research Station, all of which are working to preserve the Galapagos Giant Tortoise. This is a huge under taking since the population went from half a million to only 3,000 in the 1970s but they are slowly coming back with these sanctuary’s raising babies until they are seven or eight and then releasing them back into the wild!
^ Though he may not look like it in this photo this is Super Diego at the Charles Darwin Research Station. Over the last 40 years he has helped bring his specific bread of Galapagos Giant Tortoises, the Española Tortoises, back from near extinction (there were only 16 left!!) by fathering to over 1,700 babies since his return from the San Diego Zoo in the 1970’s.
Even though the big ones were definitely more fun to photograph I loved getting to see the little giant tortoises – the two year old below is smaller than a leaf of lettuce, and at age five, shown in the second photo below, a Galapagos Giant Tortoise is still not much bigger than your average rock!
This is the last picture and then I promise I am done with the little green guys for a while – at first I was mad the photo below is out of focus but now I am actually happy it centers on the most important part – the Galapagos Giant Tortoise!
Which do you prefer, turtle of tortoise?