6.15.2007

Lonesome no Longer?

Lonesome George is a Galápagos tortoise, a member of Geochelone nigra abingdonii, one of eleven subspecies of giant tortoises native to the Galápagos Islands.

George, quite possibly the world’s most famous non-human bachelor, is considered to be “lonesome” because since his discovery on Pinta Island in 1971, no other member of his subspecies has ever been found.

I’ve always been a fan of anything turtle-related, and ever since I first learned about George in 4th or 5th grade, I’ve been somewhat concerned about him and his loneliness.

Well, according to this article, there is reason for hope: on neighboring Isabella Island, another tortoise (creatively named “PBR03” by researchers) has been found that shares half of George’s genetic code.

This is an encouraging find although the tortoise is male (and therefore doesn’t solve the problem of George’s loneliness), because with hundreds of other tortoises roaming around on Isabella Island, the chances of finding a full-blooded George-type female (that could’ve provided PBR03 with his share of Georgeish DNA) are encouraging.

It may take a while for researchers to track down and study all the tortoises on Isabella island, but don’t worry, George has time: scientists estimate that he is about 75 years old, which should give him another 50-120 years of life.


Aside from the article linked above, Wikipedia provided some of the details for this post, especially George’s scientific name, which I certainly couldn’t have spelled on my own.

4 comments:

david mcmahon 6/16/07, 12:53 AM  

Hi Luke,

Nope, I wouldn'ta been able to spll george's scientific name either!

Cheers

David

megan 6/17/07, 1:18 AM  

...wow.. I HATE TURTLES!!!!!this is yet another thing we disagree on!!!! lol

Luke 6/17/07, 8:02 AM  

Megan,

How could you possibly hate turtles? What did they ever do to you?

megan 6/17/07, 8:54 AM  

they are not nice.. they are gross .. i just dont understand why you and jared like them so much.. and they stick their long stupid necks out to bite you.. gross gross gross

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