World's Rarest Tortoise Could Finally be a Father

By Andrew Moseman | July 22, 2008 11:54 am

GeorgePerhaps Lonesome George should now be called Curious George.

The giant Galapagos tortoise earned his moniker by keeping to himself for most of his 36 years of captivity at the Charles Darwin Research Station. Now, all of the sudden, George appears to have broken out of his solitude and mated with one of the two females at the station that come from a similar species of Galapagos tortoise.

Lonesome George is perhaps the only remaining tortoise from Pinta Island in the Galapagos, but his endangered libido had diminished the researchers’ hopes of saving the endangered Galapagos tortoises. Attempts at artificial insemination, as well as having George watch other male tortoises mating for inspiration, had all failed until now.

In four months, scientists will find out for certain whether the eggs they found in George’s nest are his offspring. But everything involving tortoises seems to require lots of patience—after all, George, estimated to be between 60 and 90 years old, is just now in his sexual prime.

Image: Wikimedia Commons/putneymark

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  • h

    ‘Attempts at artificial insemination, as well as having George watch other male tortoises mating for inspiration, had all failed until now’.

    leave him alone. scientists are such meddling freaks!

  • ashabot

    Hey Gorgeous George, way to go!

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  • none ya buisness

    Hey! I am a sixth grader. My class is learning about lonesome george and we have to write 2-3 paragraph report about if it would be better off for lonesome george living the rest of his life at the Darwin Research Station, or should he be sent back to Pinta (his island) to live alone. What do you think? PLEASE JUST TAKE LESS THEN FIVE MINUTES OF YOUR LIFETIME TO RESSPOND BACK!!!

  • none ya buisness

    anyways WOW! lonesome george is a father now!cool

  • melisa

    well cool ive heard about himbut never seen a picture of him but now i have he is the one of the cutest animls ive ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Margaret Payton

    I heard recently of Lonesome George in an endangered species book at the local library….. i can remember reading that George was the last known left in his species and that he is unlikely to ever mate as there are none of his kind left….. i can remember crying for ages…..thinking about the total destruction of the world we live in by humans …….slowly killing off species and for the survivors— leaving them uninhabitable environments…..made me so sad..and mad!!!….sooo…..TO ME=THIS THE MOST WONDERFUL NEWS!…..GO GEORGE! xxx


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