National Park Administration Board Galapagos (PNG), no EcuadorOn Tuesday, the 25th announced the discovery of a turtle believed to have gone extinct more than a hundred years ago. The animal was found two years ago on Fernandina Island and moved to the park’s giant turtle breeding center, but until now it was not known which species it belonged to.
Then the animal was subjected to genetic studies to find out its origin Yale University, in the United States of America. Scientists have identified it as Chelonoidis phantasticus. “The results of the genetic tests and the corresponding DNA comparison conducted with a sample extracted in 1906 were revealed by Yale University,” Galapagus Park said in a statement.
The Galapagos National Park is preparing for an expedition to hunt for more giant turtles in an effort to save the species.
“We are planning a major expedition in the second half of this year to Fernandina Island, where samples of turtle droppings were found, which gives hope that there will be other individuals of the species that have been found,” said Danny Rueda, Director of Papua New Guinea.
The Director of Conservation of the Galapagos Islands, Washington Tapia, explained that the name “Fernanda”, as it was called the turtle, could be between sixty and “maybe a hundred years”. According to the researcher, it is very difficult to calculate the exact age of the shekelone. The shield turtle is 54 cm long and small compared to most of them, which can reach more than 1.5 meters in length. She also weighed little when found in her habitat, but in captivity she gained size and is healthy.
The Galapagos Islands were used as the basis for the “evolution of species” theory of the British scholar Charles Darwin in the nineteenth century, in which many species of turtle live side by side with flamingos, birds, albatrosses and cormorants – a family of a type of water bird.
It is also home to many endangered plant and animal specimens. The current number of giant turtles of various species is estimated at 60,000, according to data from Galapagos National Park. / EFE, Reuters