Posted by: Waheeda Harris | July 9, 2013

The power of red

I’m used to wildlife being hidden – using their wits, senses and skin colours to hide from their prey.

And when they’re not hiding, many times its still not easy to spot them, especially when you’re looking from a distance.

But not so in the Galapagos Islands, where the predators are few, and the wildife live in harmony. The natural cycle of life takes care of the animals, with most of those living on the islands coexisting in harmony.

And knowing this, it still surprised me to see two distinct creatures of these islands, showing off their red:

Example A – Sally Lightfoot crab:

Ecuador - Galapagos Sally Lightfood crab

On the seashore, the numerous black rocks proved to be a preferred home for these bright red crabs, who would skitter quickly away when our shadows loomed over them.

They were so tiny, that even if you wanted to eat them, they would barely make a sandwich. But living here, they’re just wary of certain birds who want to dine on them.

Example B: Magnificent Frigate bird

Ecuador - Galapagos magnificent frigate bird

This sleek black bird is a typically male bird – more attractive than his female counterpart, thanks to his brilliant red neck, that he puffs up hoping to attract the female to mate.

As he waited for those females to come calling, I was less than five feet away, watching his wings pump slowly as his neck grew bigger, his prowess of maleness on display.

And so these two were standouts for the Galapagos Islands – the beacon of red among the dusty faded colours of sundrenched islands in the Pacific.

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