Baby Tortoises Appeared In The Galapagos Islands For The First Time In A Century

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After a century of dwindling birth populations, attacks by invasive species, as well as heavy casualties from fishing and whaling, baby tortoises were discovered born in the Galapagos Islands.

Baby Tortoises Appeared In The Galapagos Islands For The First Time In A Century

After a century of dwindling birth populations, attacks by invasive species, as well as heavy casualties from fishing and whaling, baby tortoises were discovered born in the Galapagos Islands. That's huge news for a species which has been struggling to survive for a century, relying on humans raising young tortoises bred in captivity until they become large enough to not fall prey to rats and predators.


Discovering naturally born young is evidence that conservation efforts are helping rebuild the islands' ecosystem, that has been damaged, perhaps irrevocably, since the seventeenth century.


Rats have been the biggest threat to the tortoise population since their accidental introduction to Galapagos via ships infested with them. The rats root out nests and eat the eggs and newborns of many island species, hurting more than just the tortoise population. Fortunately, the island of Pinzón, home to the newborn tortoises, was declared rat-free in 2012, and the results are already showing.


It is encouraging to see conservation efforts pay off so quickly. The tortoise population has risen from around 150 in 1959 to almost 500 today. A celebration is certainly in order, but there's still more hard work ahead. And it's never too late to help the cause.


Baby Tortoises Appeared In The Galapagos Islands For The First Time In A Century

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Thinking Humanity: Baby Tortoises Appeared In The Galapagos Islands For The First Time In A Century
Baby Tortoises Appeared In The Galapagos Islands For The First Time In A Century
After a century of dwindling birth populations, attacks by invasive species, as well as heavy casualties from fishing and whaling, baby tortoises were discovered born in the Galapagos Islands.
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