April 13, 2021
A zoo in Wales has welcomed a surprise addition to its family of animals, with a baby Eqyptian tortoise born at Plantasia in Swansea.
It’s exciting news for the zoo’s conservation team, which is working towards protection of the species. Egyptian tortoises are listed as critically endangered by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature).
The tortoises can retain fertilised eggs for up to four years. With the males and females separated from each other at the zoo, it’s believed mating took place before the tortoises arrived at Plantasia.
Plantasia’s Zoo and Education Manager, Michael Colwill says the team “suspects the egg was buried without knowing, so this new addition was completely unexpected”.
The adorable baby is barely larger than a 50p coin. The tortoise doesn’t have a name yet and the sex is not yet known.
Plantasia is running a Facebook competition for the public to suggest a name for the new addition, which is expected to live for around 70-100 years.