Lonesome George Might Not Be the Last Galapagos Tortoise of Its Kind

Tourists coming to Ecuador may still have scope to stare at Extinct Galapagos Tortoise as scientists are now planning to revive the Floreana island tortoise and the Pinta Island tortoise from hybrid breeds that have been located on Isabela Island.

As revealed by some sources, lonesome George, believed by many to be the last Giant Galapagos Tortoise, died in June, 2012. Though there have been little controversies about this Galapagos tortoise's age, it was usually thought by many that he was at least 100 years of age. While no cause for George's death has been recorded, the scientists are of the opinion that he died middle-aged, since tortoises are expected to live up for 200 years, in general.

In spite of the repeated attempts of the scientists, George was never interested to mate, and as a result of this, the race of Giant tortoise got extinct with his death. As an alternative to lonesome George's mating, scientists are now planning to revive the Floreana island tortoise and the Pinta Island tortoise from hybrid breeds that have been located on Isabela Island. Experts believe that the origin of these hybrid species dates back to the 17th and 18th century. While most of the Pinta Island tortoises were hunted by sailors and fishermen, they went more extinct due to feral goats, which were mainly responsible for destroying the habitat of these tortoises; lonesome George somehow managed to survive, by dining on his staple food, i.e., island cactus.

While it was never easy to move the frozen body of George, weighing 200 pound, from Galapagos to New York, it was ultimately made possible due to the remarkable effort of many people, including the agricultural inspectors, park securities, colleagues, custom agents and many more, who were extremely careful about the proper functioning of the entire project.

The reconstruction of this Giant tortoise has been observed as a method of spreading awareness among people about the tragedy of species extinction. Moreover, it also happens to be an excellent visual treat for the future Ecuadorian travelers, who will have a scope to stare at the hybrid successors of the species. Nature Galapagos and Ecuador, one of the premier tour companies that organizes Galapagos island holidays, has decided to include a package only for Galapagos Tortoises lovers to make such tours even more special.

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Categories: Animal Rights

Tags: galapagos animals, galapagos island cruises, galapagos tortoise


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Nikolay Mancheno
Press Contact, Nature Galapagos & Ecuador Cia Ltd.