- Issue: Spring 2015
- Author: Katy Fenn
Going to the Galápagos Islands, I knew I was going to see wildlife. It’s the main attraction of the world-famous archipelago, after all. What I didn’t expect—and what left me in awe—was the sheer number and variety of animals I saw.
Take, for example, the morning I spent hiking on Floreana Island. It was just after sunrise, and we were en route to a cove where sea turtles are known to nest. As we approached our destination, the cove appeared to be deserted: no wildlife, just tracks of where they had been and driftwood along the white sandy beach.
But as I looked closer, taking in the moment to really see what was around me, life forms started to take shape. The rocks at the sea edge were actually sea turtles; a few others were swimming just offshore. Blue-footed boobies swooped through the sky searching for their next meal.
And juvenile pelicans played in the water. I couldn’t tell what they were doing at first, but as I got closer to the surf I noticed that the sand was lined with hundreds of small stingrays, and the young pelicans were attempting to toss them into the air.
That morning in the Galápagos made me realize that we often move so fast in life that we don’t notice all that is happening around us. It’s important to stop every once in a while and really see the full picture. If you don’t, you could miss something as magical as the joy of young, hungry birds at play.