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Africa

My Oldest New Friend The Aldabra Giant Tortoise

200+ years old is the age of this tortoise I was told. It might be exaggerated but still, I think this is the oldest animal I have ever met. I had to check history books to imagine how the world was like when this old folk was a 3-inch small hatchling.

Giant tortoises are proven the longest-living land animals and the longest-living reptiles, with the oldest recorded at 152.

The Aldabra giant tortoise (Aldabrachelys gigantea) is the world’s largest tortoise, together with the Galapagos tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra).

This Aldabra giant tortoise is the most baby-faced old folk I’ve ever encountered. My fisheye lens even helped me to magnify the cuteness which seems like a good way to let more people appreciate these long-lived, peaceful animals. Despite the very long, tough journey before reaching their natural habitat, they’re among the easiest animal for me to photograph.

We indeed ought to keep them away from unnatural harm because our ancestors massacred and eliminated at least 35 species and subspecies of their ancestors (giant tortoises) within a very short period of only 250 years. Now, the Aldabra tortoise of the Aldabra Atoll is the only species left in islands of the Indian Ocean.