Large Cactus Finch on a Soft Spined Prickly Pear A Large Cactus Finch (Geospiza conirostris) perched on its favorite food, the Prickly Pear (Opuntia helleri). This male finch's feathers are changing to black for the mating season. The white feather by his beak indicates that he is an old bird. His long back toe helps him climb trees. There were no tortoises or land iguanas to eat the low pads or pollinate the plant, so the opuntia evolved as a low growing bush with soft spines, unlike any on other islands (adaptive radiation). Genovesa Island.
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