Friday, March 24, 2006

A sad passing

A giant aldabra tortoise thought to be around 250 years old has died in the Kolkata zoo of liver failure, Indian authorities said on Thursday.

The tortoise had been the pet of Robert Clive, famous British military officer in colonial India around the middle of the 18th century. The tortoise, named "Addwaitya" meaning the "The One and Only" in Bengali, was the oldest tortoise in the world. The tortoise was brought to the zoo about 130 years ago, and it seems that he is more than 250 years old. ," Addwaitya's early life showed that British sailors had brought him from the Seychelles islands and presented him to Clive, who was rising fast in the East India Company's military hierarchy.

"This is a sad day for us. We will miss him very much," a zoo keeper said.

Wild Aldabra tortoises are found in the Aldabra island in the Indian Ocean Seychelles islands. They average about 120 kg (265 pounds). It is believed that tortoises are the longest lived of all animals, with life spans often surpassing 100 years.


Fran Friel said...

I read about this fella in the news. Sad indeed. What an amazing being he must have been...and still is somewhere in tortoise after-life, I'm sure.


Chris Perridas said...

It is humbling to think of those we share the Earth with.