Galápagos tortoise © Tui De Roy/Minden Pictures
In 1835, British naturalist Charles Darwin explored the volcanic Galápagos Islands in the eastern Pacific Ocean. While studying the islands" creatures, he concluded that a diverse array of animal species hailing from South America, primarily reptiles and birds capable of traversing the vast expanse of water, had migrated to the Galápagos and gradually adapted to their surroundings. One of the species examined in the study was the Galápagos giant tortoise, a tortoise only found on the Galápagos Islands, that can grow up to 2 metres long and weigh over 270 kilograms. The islands are named after these magnificent creatures: "galápago" means tortoise in Spanish. Let’s celebrate these gentle giants, which contributed to one of the great scientific discoveries of the 19th century.