Mating Tortoises Interrupted, Slowest Chase Ever Begins [Video]


Tortoises
[Photo credit: National Geographic]

During a recent National Geographic Pristine Seas expedition to the Seychelles, explorer, Paul Rose came across two giant tortoises in the middle of a mating session. In the middle of Assumption Island, the couple did not kindly to the interruption.

Rose writes that as the crew was exploring the island he heard a loud grunting noise. Upon investigation, Rose found the loving couple. The male tortoise did not seem to be scared by the intruding humans. He begins to snort, hiss and slowly approach Rose. The giant tortoise then begins to chase Rose, if you can call it a chase. He might be slow, but his powerful snapping jaw is enough to make the crew retreat, slowly that is.

Assumption Island is a small island made up of a little more than four miles. The island is the remains of a failing guano extraction market. The thick layer of bird excrement was a great source of phosphorus for farming. The industry has since crashed due to new innovations and the island’s ecosystem is still having trouble recovering.

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