This poor creature has been named “Lonesome George” and is the sole remaining member of his particular species of Galapagos Tortoise.
Currently ‘George’ who 90 years old, and is the only known Pinta Island tortoise, resides in Ecuador where he was taken in 1971. All his fellows were killed for meat or died as a result of predation on their eggs by rats, or of starvation when feral goats destroyed the vegetation.
Despite his age George has finally discovered the joy of sex! Problem of course is that the only mates available are of a different species and so far all attempts to hatch the eggs to preserve his species have failed. Nobody is sure at the moment if this means George is sterile, or if the species are simply not biologically compatible.
So, if anyone out there knows of a Galapagos Tortoise, perhaps in private hands, it might be a species saving move to note it’s whereabouts, take photographs of it, and send the information over to the Ecuadoreans on the slight chance it *might* just be the one remaining female, or virile male, required to keep animals like George around for the forseeable future… otherwise, for the Pinto Tortoise especially, time would appear to be running out.