Giant turtles that went extinct 100 years ago suddenly appeared in the Galápagos

“It is believed that it became extinct over 100 years ago! We have reconfirmed the existence of this turtle,” Ecuadorian Environment Minister Gustavo Manrique wrote on his Twitter account, according to The Guardian .

The turtle Chelonoidis phantasticus was found two years ago on Fernandina Island, one of the youngest and most pristine islands in the Galápagos archipelago. The turtle was discovered during a joint expedition between Galápagos National Park staff and the Galápagos Conservancy.
A turtle species thought to have gone extinct more than a hundred years ago has reappeared in Ecuador
Scientists from Yale University (USA) later determined that the turtle belonged to the species Chelonoidis phantasticus, considered extinct more than a century ago. “Yale University has revealed the results of the turtle’s genetic research. They compared its DNA to a sample taken in 1906,” Galápagos National Park announced.
The Galápagos National Park is preparing an expedition to find more giant tortoises in an effort to save the species.
The Galápagos Islands were the basis for British scientist Charles Darwin to propose the theory of species evolution in the 19th century. The islands are also home to a large number of endangered flora and fauna.
According to data from Galápagos National Park, the population of giant tortoises of many different species on the archipelago is estimated to be about 60,000. In 2012, a giant male tortoise named “Lonely George” on Pinta Island in the Galápagos Islands died without leaving any descendants. This is the last individual of the Pinta Island tortoise.

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