New species of giant tortoise discovered in Galapagos

Scientists say they have identified a new species of giant tortoise on the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific.


They used genetic data to determine that a group of 250 slow-moving reptiles was distinct from another tortoise species on Santa Cruz island.

It is the 15th known tortoise species to be discovered on the archipelago, though four are now extinct.

The new species has been named “Chelonoidis donfaustoi”, after a retired Galapagos park ranger.

Giant tortoises in the Galapagos tend to weigh up to 250kg and live longer than 100 years.