Mockingbirds can be found all over the Galapagos – these mockingbirds are unique to the Galapagos – and like lots of the wildlife there, they have evolved into separate species on different islands. Also, like a lot of the wildlife there – the different species look pretty much exactly the same!
There is a lot of scientific discussion about what constitutes a separate species, and what is considered only a sub-species. Scientists are changing their minds all the time – how are we supposed to keep a list of the species that we have seen if they keep changing the rules?!?!?!
Well, we do what we can….. if there is a doubt, the ‘animals and birds committee’ (PB and CC) have a meeting and make a decision as to what goes on the ‘official list’. In the case of mockingbirds, there are three different mockingbirds that we can add to the list – even though they look exactly the same! 🙂 There are only four different mockingbird species on the Galapagos – so three out of four ain’t bad… (as Meatloaf would almost say :-)).
How can we identify them if they look the same? Well, it’s because Floreana, Española, and San Cristóbal each have their own unique species – which is not found on any other island, and the final species of the four is found on all the other islands, but NOT Floreana, Española, and San Cristóbal (this one is just called the ‘Galapagos Mockingbird’). So therefore you can tell which species of mockingbird it is, by where you saw it – there is no crossover. Therefore if we saw a mockingbird on Española, then it can only be the Española Mockingbird – yes, how convenient!
So, here is our gallery of the mockingbirds of the Galapagos – yes, they do all look almost the same – but they are NOT all the same! 🙂