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Google Street view to map out Galapagos

Many of the volcanic islands of the Galapagos archipelago remain closed to tourists but Google has now captured panoramic views of some of the most inaccessible places on the islands
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Google sent hikers to the Galapagos with Street View gear called "trekkers," 19-kilogram computer backpacks with large, soccer ball-like cameras mounted on a tower.
Catlin Seaview Survey  |  Unveiling the Galapagos    |   05-29-2013
The cameras captured the nesting sites of blue-footed boobies, the red-throated "magnificent frigatebirds," swimming hammerhead sharks and, of course, the island's giant tortoises.
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We spent 10 days there hiking over trails ... and even down the crater of an active volcano and these are islands, so half of the life there is under the water surface. So we brought Street View underwater to swim with sea lions, sharks and other marine animals

—Raleigh Seamster, project leader for Google Maps

Google is processing the footage and is trying to stitch it together. It hopes to post it to Street View later this year.

The imagery is not only for the pleasure of armchair travellers, the data collected by the expedition will aid Charles Darwin Foundation and the Galapagos National Park Service to monitor underwater environments, especially reefs which were devastated by coral bleaching in 1982 and 1998 following El Nino events.

Scientists working with Google are exploring the footage for other species and hope to update the pictures regularly throughout the years as they study the effects of invasive species, tourism and climate change on the island's ecosystems.

Primary source ► Unveiling the Galapagos
Further reading ►
| Image of |
Primary source ► Unveiling the Galapagos
Further reading ►
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