Jonathan, an inimitable Seychelles Giant Tortoise, was recently distinguished with the Guinness World Record for being the world’s oldest animal to walk, or rather sprawl, on Earth. At the approximate age of 187 in 2019, it means the tortoise was born circa 1832 when the world did not yet have the telephone, photography, nor even the light bulb. Jonathan in September 2014 Born on the small African island nation of the Seychelles, in the Indian Ocean, Jonathan was relocated to a new home in 1882, at the age of around 50. He was moved to the tropical island of St. Helena, a British overseas territory in the South Atlantic, as a gift to St. Helena’s Plantation House, the official residence of the island’s Governor. Jonathan has shared his home with several other tortoises there, both males and females. However, he has not produced an offspring as no mating match is among the female tortoises. Photograph of St Helena resident tortoise Jonathan circa 1900, with a Boer War prisoner The females belong to the Aldabra giant tortoise group, different from Jonathan’s kin. In the bunch is also David, who at only 80 years of age is not even half the […]

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