August 26, 2009
The fantastic Galapagos Islands of Ecuador are not only one of the present-day Natural Wonders of the World and one of the most exciting tourism destinations around the globe, but a permanent and living “Laboratory of Evolution, Biology and Nature”, as they have been frequently described.
From august 22 to 26 of this year, the Archipelago was the siege of the II World Summit on Evolution. Organized by the prestigious San Francisco de Quito University, which has a campus on the islands, the summit congregated for several days over 150 international scientists, experts, professors and graduate students to discuss the still unfolding and fascinating secrets of natural sciences, mainly biology, which are so vividly evidenced in Galapagos.
Conferences, panels, discussions, presentations of scientific papers and studies were on the agenda of the event, attended by the elite of world science. Special emphasis was made on the most recent discoveries of novel and previously unknown or unregistered species in Galapagos, particularly in the areas of invertebrates, terrestrial and marine, as well as fish and other marine vertebrates; the amazing case of northern Isabela’s pink land iguanas and the still surprising adaptations as well as the selective, occasional and or seasonal interbreeding amongst some compatible species of the celebrity birds, endemic to the Archipelago, the famed “Darwin’s finches” .
The event was organized to commemorate the Bicentenary of Charles Darwin’s birthday as well as the 150th anniversary of the publication of Darwin’s historic book on “The Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection”. 2009 is also the Golden Jubilee, (50 Years) of the creation of the Galapagos National Park and of the Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos. A unique year indeed….!!
While scientists from around the world flock to these magic islands to discuss, debate and exchange information of scientific value; a host of tours and expeditions for the non scientific, just nature and adventure loving travelers of the world are available. Among them, Metropolitan Touring and Adventure Associates cruises and tour programs provide a variety of opportunities for you to also discover, your own way, the uniqueness of the “Enchanted Galapagos Islands”