Up to 50 years
The Galapagos flightless cormorant is an endemic species to Galapagos, and is not only the heaviest cormorant species, but also the only one out of 29 species which cannot fly. They are therefore confined to the lava shoreline and beaches of Isabela and Fernandina. The adults are black on top and dark brown underneath with bright turquoise eyes. They have stunted wings that are one third the size of the wingspan they would require to fly. They have four webbed toes (like all members of the cormorant family) and the females tend to be smaller than the males. Natural selection led to the species no longer having functional wings as they had very few land predators, and individuals that were better suited to swimming were more successful in passing on their genes.
Flightless cormorants in Galapagos
Click an image to view larger
Tackling Plastic Pollution
"45% of all plastic used along the Pacific coastline of South and Central America is inadequately managed, leaking 1 million tonnes of plastic each year."
We are working with partners across the Eastern Pacific to make Galapagos plastic pollution free once again, identifying the sources and impacts of plastic and supporting innovative solutions.