Galapagos Field Course

8 – 19 January 2019

Module Convenor: Profesor Andy Russell

On 15th September 1835, the extinct volcanoes of San Cristobal were spotted from the Beagle. After just five weeks exploring the Galapagos Islands, the young Charles Darwin was indelibly marked by their biogeography, and this experience would prove central to his deduction that life on Earth evolved from common ancestry by natural selection. Today, the Galapagos Islands are a melting pot where the locals meet tourists and each group meets scientists. A typical field course to San Cristobal in the Galapagos Islands will introduce you the fauna of four key biomes: oceanic, coastal, lowland/urban and highland. In each, we will introduce you to the interplay (which is often positive) of science, tourism and the local economy.

While there students will gain first-hand experience of the methods used to study the plights of island flora and fauna through a series of guided tours, practical sessions, discussions and seminars by faculty from the Universities of Exeter and San Francisco, Quito, as well as staff from national parks. They will then have the opportunity to conduct their own group-led research projects in ecology, conservation, animal behaviour and/or evolution – enabling the opportunity to answer big questions with newfound theoretical and practical knowledge.

Find out about the degree programmes these students are studying.

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