a herd of goats on Isabela Island  

This grassland was once covered by thick forest. 

Living With Guests

Farmers didn’t like the blackberries. They choked other plants. Farmers had to rip them out by hand.

Goats were brought to the islands to feed people. But the goats ate all the plants that giant tortoises eat. In 2004, the goats were killed. This was done so native plant and animal life would come back.

Invasive species pose a real threat to the islands. Each introduced species must be watched and controlled. This protects the native island life.

Goats eat plants like prickly pear cactus. The cactus is food for giant tortoises, land iguanas, doves, cactus finches, and mockingbirds.