World’s oldest land animal, Jonathan the tortoise, celebrates one hundred and ninetieth birthday


He’s lived by each World Wars, seven British monarchs, 39 U.S. presidents and is older than the Eiffel Tower – and now, Jonathan the tortoise is celebrating one other yr across the solar as he turns 190. 

Jonathan, the world’s oldest recognized land animal, resides in Saint Helena, a British territory within the Atlantic Ocean off the coasts of Angola and Namibia. The island held an official birthday bash over the weekend, celebrating the longest-living chelonian on the island’s governor’s residence. Along with internet hosting broadcasts about Jonathan’s significance, the island additionally held a “main event” in his honor on Sunday, the place individuals might get Jonathan stamps and different Jonathan-themed souvenirs. 

The island’s tourism division posted photographs of the celebration on Sunday, exhibiting the planet’s longest-living tortoise and “national treasure” having fun with a “cake” of a few of his favourite backyard greens.  

Jonathan’s lengthy life has earned him two Guinness World Records – one in 2019 for turning into the world’s oldest land animal and one other this January for turning into the oldest living chelonian, a time period encompassing turtles, terrapins and tortoises. 

He is believed to have been born in 1832, however in accordance with Guinness, may very well be even older, as he wasn’t discovered till he wound up in St. Helena till 1882 when he was already absolutely mature. 

According to the record-keeping group, Jonathan has lived by a few of humanity’s greatest milestones: the primary phone name in 1876, the completion of the Eiffel Tower in 1887, the Wright brothers’ first power-driven flight in 1903 and the primary individuals to stroll on the moon in 1969. 

A photograph dated to c. 1882–86 taken within the grounds of Plantation on St Helena – shortly after Jonathan arrived on the island (Jonathan is proven on the left)

Guinness World Records

Through all of that, nonetheless, his vet instructed Guinness that Jonathan’s pursuits have stayed the identical – sleeping, consuming and mating. 

“In spite of his age, Jonathan still has good libido and is seen frequently to mate with Emma and sometimes Fred – animals are often not particularly gender-sensitive!” the veterinarian, Joe, instructed Guinness earlier this yr.

And the celebrations aren’t over. Saint Helena’s tourism web site says that there’s an application underway to make a nationwide vacation in honor of the tortoise. 


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