The marine iguana is unique to the Galapagos islands and is found on all of them. It is adapted to a life in and around the sea, feeding on seaweed and algae and breeding on the coral or lava beaches. It has a laterally flattened tail and a dorsal fin allowing it to swim and dive. They are a multicolored species depending on the food and the amount of sunshine they are exposed to, ranging from a dull grey-black to bright red. They are also unique in being able to expel the extreme amounts of salt consumed with the algae through specialized glands in their nose. They sneeze a spray of salt which sometimes coats their faces in a white powder.
The multitude of iguanas climbing over each other among the pitted lava rocks looks like a scene from an alien landscape or from the depths of hell itself.