Believe it or not, this place does exist and is known as the Galápagos Islands! I am fortunate enough to be headed to Santa Cruz Island, one of the many islands that make up the magnificent and truly amazing Galápagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador.
Over the next few days, I will be checking in via tweets on Twitter and blogs posted here to share with you what I am experiencing and learning. I am traveling with Shea Johnson, the San Diego Zoo’s videographer, and our goal is to get as much footage as possible of these wonderful islands and the amazing animals that call them home.
Our plan is to visit the Charles Darwin Research Center and talk with the staff there about the goals and challenges of conservation in this region. We hope to visit Diego, a Galápagos tortoise that once lived at the San Diego Zoo. And, of course, we want to learn more about Lonesome George, the last of his subspecies of Galápagos tortoise, that lives at the Center.
If time permits, we plan on heading out beyond the research area. We hope to take a boat to visit some of the more remote coves and then hike to the higher elevations to see more wildlife. It is clear to us that the Galápagos Islands offer much more to do and see than we could possibly fit into one week, but trust me when I say we have a VERY busy time ahead of us.
Rick Schwartz is a zookeeper and the San Diego Zoo’s ambassador.