Marine Iguanas My Pet and Me


Marine Iguanas

Special edition of the factual series about pets. Ferne and Kai travel to the Galapagos Islands to search for their most famous resident, the marine iguana.


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Transcript


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Hello, I'm Rory.

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And I'm Ferne, and today we are in the Galapagos Islands.

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Yes, we've travelled all the way from the UK across

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the Atlantic Ocean to this group of islands off the coast of Ecuador in

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-South America.

-We have come to this amazing place because it is home to

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some of the most incredible animals in the world.

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Yes, and we're going to meet some local children to tell us

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all about them. So, Ferne, where are you headed today?

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Well, today I'm off on an adventure to an island to see an animal

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-that can only be found right here in the Galapagos.

-Sounds incredible.

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I know! I can't wait! And you can come with me, if you like?

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-See you later.

-See you.

-Come on!

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# My pet My pet and me

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# My pet My pet and me

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# Down every street Are pets to meet

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# Some big, some small Some scaly, some furry

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# Some keep very still Some are always in a hurry

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# Some have four paws

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# Some have sharp claws

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-# Some quack

-Some bark

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-# Some purr

-Some moo

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-# Some grunt

-Some squawk

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# Some cock-a-doodle-doo

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# My pet My pet and me

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# My pet My pet and me

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# My pet My pet and me

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# Have you met My pet and me? #

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I'm here at the port in Santa Cruz to meet Kai and his dad, Robbie.

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They're going to be getting ready for our big adventure,

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so let's try and find them.

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-Hola, Kai.

-Hi.

-How are you?

-Good.

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-Hi, and you must be Robbie.

-Hello.

-Hi. Lovely to meet you.

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-Are you excited?

-Yes. And you?

-I cannot wait.

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-Where's our boat?

-In the bay.

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-Shall we go?

-Yes.

-OK.

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-Gracias.

-Life jacket.

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-So, Kai, where are we off to?

-Here. Fernandina Island.

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Oh, I've heard a lot about it.

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-It's very special, isn't it?

-It's the youngest.

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In all of the Galapagos Islands?

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-Yes.

-But there's also something else special about it.

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-What is it?

-It's a volcano.

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That's right. It is.

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A volcano is an open mountain, and when it's active,

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it spits out hot molten rock called lava, and the whole island of

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Fernandina is an active volcano,

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so it is still growing and changing every day, isn't it, Kai?

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-Yes.

-So do any people live on the island?

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There's no people. Just wildlife. It is a national park.

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-Everything is protected here.

-So what are we going to see there?

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-Marine iguanas.

-I cannot wait!

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A marine iguana is an iguana that can swim and they are only found in

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the Galapagos Islands. It is thought that a long time ago,

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a land iguana drifted out to sea from South America and landed here

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on the Galapagos,

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and because it was on an island, it needed to learn to do what?

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-It learned to swim.

-That's right.

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They needed to go swimming to get their food.

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So, it looks like we're almost there, aren't we?

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-Yes.

-I cannot wait to see it. Rory, while we drop anchor,

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will you please tell us some fun facts about marine iguanas?

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Of course, Ferne.

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One - marine iguanas can live to over 50 years old.

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Two - they can be mostly seen on the shore or on rocks close to

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the sea, and they can be found on many of the Galapagos Islands.

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Three - a large group of marine iguanas is known as a colony,

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and a group of females is known as a harem.

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Four - marine iguanas might be a little scary-looking but they are

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herbivores, which means they only eat plants.

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Five - marine iguanas are one of the few animals that can shrink in size.

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If they can't find anything to eat for a long time,

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they don't just get thinner, they get shorter, too.

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But once they find food again,

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they can regrow back to their original size.

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How amazing is that?

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My Pet And Me!

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We have arrived on Fernandina to see one of the most incredible animals

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that lives here - the marine iguana.

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And I can see why it's uninhabited because the island is literally just

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pure black volcanic rock.

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Yes. But it's hard to find marine iguanas because they're black

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-like the black rocks.

-Yes.

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-Let's go find some.

-I hope we can spot some.

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-Do you think we will?

-Yes.

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Look, iguana poo.

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-Oh, wow.

-Yes, it's green because iguanas eat green algae.

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It's REALLY green, isn't it? And it looks pretty fresh.

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-Yes.

-Does that mean we're getting close?

-Yes.

-OK, come on.

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Wow, look how many there are.

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I know, there's so many, this is incredible!

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-Yes.

-How many do you think there are?

-500 or more.

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I would not be surprised. There's too many to count.

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-Yes.

-What is your favourite thing about them?

-How they swim.

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-What do they swim like?

-They move only their tail.

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So their arms by their side and they just use their tails?

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-Yes.

-And that's why their tails are so long?

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-Yes.

-But their arms are useful for something, aren't they?

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Yes, they have some nails, so when they get out of the water,

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sometimes there are waves, so they need to grab on the rocks.

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That is really important because the waves here are huge,

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so they use their nice, long claws to grip tightly

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to the rocks as they climb out.

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-Where do they feed?

-They feed underwater and they eat plants.

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They hold their breath and dive.

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They can hold their breath for a big time, so they eat underwater.

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When a marine iguana is underwater, its heart rate slows,

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and this allows it to stay under the water for longer,

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but they can't really stay underwater for too long, can they?

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-Do you know why?

-Because they get cold.

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That is exactly right.

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Marine iguanas are cold-blooded animals, which means that they get

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their body heat from the sun, so after they've been swimming,

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they come and bask or sunbathe on a rock to help heat up.

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They also gather together in groups and it's like a big iguana cuddle.

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They help to warm each other up.

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-So that's why they are all in a group.

-Yes, exactly.

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-And their dark colour helps them absorb the sun too, doesn't it?

-Yes.

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Because marine iguanas feed underwater,

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they end up swallowing a lot of saltwater, so they have

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a special gland right in between their eyes, and this helps to

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take the salt out of their blood and they end up sneezing it out

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and it keeps them nice and healthy.

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And what are these on their heads?

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I think it's like a Mohawk.

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It does, it looks like a pretty cool haircut, doesn't it?

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These nice, big crests on the top of their heads.

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I love them. I think they're fantastic.

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Me too. But they don't smell so good.

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No, they definitely do not smell very good, that is so right.

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-Shall we go see if we can spot some more?

-Yes.

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Kai, this iguana here, do you think it's male or female?

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-He's male.

-How do you know?

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Because he's bigger than the other ones.

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He is pretty big and he's got some amazing colours, too, doesn't he?

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-Yes.

-Do you know why they're so colourful?

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To tell other females that he's the big iguana.

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That's exactly right.

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So they get these beautiful kind of greens and browns along them during

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breeding season, but they do this head bobbing, too.

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-Why do they do that?

-That means that he's telling the other males that

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-this is his territory.

-Exactly.

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They're just trying to scare all the other males off their patch of rock.

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There are so many marine iguanas here, aren't there, Kai?

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Yes. Fernandina is the place with the most amount of iguanas

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in the whole Galapagos.

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That is fantastic.

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But even though there are lots here, marine iguanas are endangered,

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-aren't they?

-Yes.

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-Why is that?

-Because they have predators like snakes and hawks.

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And there's also humans, cats and dogs.

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OK, so our pets are also causing their numbers to go down, too?

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-Yes.

-That's very sad. But there's something else as well?

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Yes, the weather

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can make them die, because if it's really hot, their food disappears.

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So what can we do to help them?

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You can ask my dad. He has lived in the Galapagos a lot of time.

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OK, Robbie, what can we do to help these marine iguanas?

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Well, most important we have to protect the place where they live.

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We should keep an eye on the population always.

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OK, that's fantastic. Well, it's really important that we

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help to protect these amazing animals.

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And Robbie and the island guides do this

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by making sure that only a small

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number of people visit Fernandina, so the animals and the place

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that they live is undisturbed.

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My Pet And Me!

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Marine iguanas are such fascinating creatures, aren't they, Kai?

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Yes, I like them.

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Me too. If they could do absolutely anything, what would they do?

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If the marine iguanas could do anything,

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they'll have an ice-cream boat.

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They'll make delicious ice cream

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and sail around the islands in their boat, give some to all

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the other animals.

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Their favourite flavour of ice cream would be seaweed.

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Yum-yum.

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I have had an amazing time seeing the marine iguanas, but Kai has

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brought me to a very special spot, where we will be able to swim

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with them and see them in action underwater.

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I can't wait. Kai, what do you think we're going to see?

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Swimming, diving and maybe even we can see them feeding.

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I hope so. And there's lots over there, aren't there?

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Yeah, they're trying to get to the rocks where they can feed.

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There's a big one, look.

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Look, straight.

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Amazing.

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-Oh, look, there's loads.

-There's a lot here.

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-Shall we take a closer look?

-Yes.

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This is amazing. I can't get over how quickly they move under

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the water with their big tails.

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Yeah, they can hold their breaths for pretty much time.

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They can, they can hold their breath for ages as well.

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Marine iguanas can hold their breath for up to 45 minutes.

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That is at least 20 times longer than us.

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-Shall we go and have a look for more?

-Yes.

-Yes.

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There are two huge marine iguanas just eating on these rocks

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right below us, and they're just clinging on.

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There's quite a strong current here and they are just

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clinging on really tight and just chomping away

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at all of the seaweed and algae on the rocks.

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-Did you see it feeding?

-Yes.

-At the bottom.

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It's stuck there, just eating away.

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This is incredible.

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-That swim was amazing, wasn't it?

-Yes.

-What was your favourite part?

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When we saw the marine iguana feeding by the algaes.

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I know. I couldn't believe we saw that and I think the one we saw

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at the bottom feeding was the biggest one that I've seen so far.

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Yeah. And how they can eat while they're underwater.

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I know, and clinging on really, really tightly,

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because the current was strong, wasn't it?

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-Yeah.

-Kai, I have had so much fun with you and you've taught me

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everything about these marine iguanas. Thank you so much.

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-Thank you too.

-Put it there.

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My Pet And Me.

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-Hi, Rory.

-Hi, Ferne. You look excited. How was your day?

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Oh, it was incredible. We went to an island and we saw

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these scaly sea creatures called marine iguanas

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and we even managed to swim with them.

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Wow, that sounds amazing.

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Oh, it was. And Kai taught me so much about how the marine iguanas

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live and what the local people are doing to help protect them.

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-It was fascinating.

-We hope you enjoyed yourselves too.

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We just love sharing our animal adventures with you.

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# Look where we've been

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# Look what we've seen

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# Thank you so much for showing us

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# The animals of the Galapagos

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# On land or sea

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# So much to see

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-# Iguanas, crabs

-And turtles too!

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-# Flamingos, sharks

-A giant tortoise or two

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# Amazing wildlife to look at

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# In its natural habitat

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# Animals we've not seen before

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# Come back soon and see some more

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# My pet, my pet and me

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# My pet, my pet at me

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# My pet, my pet and me

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# Come back and see My Pet And Me

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ALL: Bye!

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Ferne meets Kai and together they travel to the remote island of Fernandina in the Galapagos Islands. They search for its famous resident, the marine iguana. Kai shares his knowledge and together they snorkel with this amazing creature.


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