Genetic analysis indicates the existence of a 150 years long extinct giant tortoise species pretensions.
Recent descendants of the species living on Isabela island, about 300 km from their original home, the island of Floreana in the Galapagos. Current Biology publishes the results on Monday.
The discovery is interesting, because the giant tortoises of the species Chelonoidis elephant opus are a key species for the Galapagos, and a new population on the islands would be good for the ecosystem.
Instructions for the survival of the giant were found by genetic analysis of blood samples from 1600 several giant tortoises on Isabela island. Between these turtles were specimens with less than 15 years before had been fathered by an original C. elephant opus.
More than 100 years
Because the giant tortoises easily over 100 years old can be, it is likely that the pathogens living somewhere around.
The Yale researchers are excited because this is the first time that this technique a species ‘found’ is. Even without the missing original turtle species would be bred back.
There is also an emotional value to the animal, the tortoises of the Galapagos was one of the animal groups with whom Charles Darwin discovered a different island. These differences led him to invent the theory of evolution
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