These volcanic islands have never been connected to the mainland throughout history. Still, animals and plants have been able to migrate here in different ways. By adapting to local conditions, they evolved differently from their continental ancestors.
Many animals and plants on Galapagos are therefore unique: one quarter of the beach fish, half of the flora and almost all reptiles are found nowhere else in the world. In many cases there are also different animal and plant species on the different islands.
Because no large mammals ever landed, the reptiles were dominant. The islands were uninhabited until 1535: the animals still have very little instinctual fear of humans today.
In order to safeguard this situation for the future, numerous rules apply on the Galapagos Islands: the number of tourists is limited, the number of boats (from 8 to 100 passengers) that can visit the islands is limited to 83 and the visit to the islands is only possible with recognized local guides and according to certain procedures.
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