Giant tortoise thought to be extinct discovered in Galapagos

Giant tortoise thought to be extinct discovered in Galapagos
Copyright  Galapagos National Park
By Doloresz Katanich  with AP and AFP

The Galápagos National Park will start a breeding program for the species.

A tortoise has been found whose species was believed to be extinct for a century.

The female tortoise, believed being over a hundred years old, was seen alive on the Galápagos island of Fernandina during a joint expedition by the Directorate of the Galápagos National Park and the US organisation Galapagos Conservancy.

The last known time a tortoise of the Chelonoidis Phantasticus species was seen there alive was 1906.

The researchers believe that she is not alone, as they have previously found tracks indicating a further presence in other areas of Fernandina Island.

While giant tortoises once thrived on most of the continents of the world, the Galapagos tortoises now represent one of the remaining two groups of giant tortoises in the entire world, according to the Galapagos Conservatory.

The archipelago was declared a National Heritage Site in 1979 in recognition of its unique species, animals and plants, terrestrial and marine that served as the basis for the English scientist Charles Darwin to develop his theory of the evolution of species.

Click on the video above to learn more about this discovery.

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