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Lonesome George Not the Last of His Kind, After All?

Maybe the late, lamented Galápagos tortoise wasn’t the end of his line, after all. A DNA shocker is spurring a hunt for living cousins.

When Lonesome George, the last Pinta Island giant tortoise, died in June in the Galapagos, the world mourned the demise of a species – but a new report says the reptile was not so lonely after all.

There are at least 17 tortoises on the Galapagos Islands that have similar genetic traits to George, including some that may be from his same genus, the Galapagos National Park said in a statement – meaning that George’s death “does not represent the end of the Chelonoidis abingdonii species of Pinta Island giant tortoises”.

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Galapagos Tortoise - Discover: Early reader's wildlife photography book

by Discover Press [CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform]
Price: £5.83 - - -

The Galápagos tortoises: Nomenclatural and survival status (Chelonian research monographs)

by Peter Charles Howard Pritchard [Chelonian Research Foundation]
Price: £829.99 - - -

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