Giant tortoises of Seychelles

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Giant tortoises used to live throughout the world for millions of years, but only few species survived on remote islands such as Seychelles and Galapagos. Out of several species that used to live in Seychelles and other islands in the Indian ocean only one type survived - Aldabra. It was found in Aldabra atoll after giant tortoises were thought to be non-existent in the Indian ocean. They were over-exploited by European sailors and considered extinct by 1840. Discovered in Aldabra atoll they were re-introduced to the main Seychelles islands in the 20th century. They are some of the longest living animals in the world. Their usual lifespan is around 100 years, but some can live up to 200. Their average length is about 120 centimeters and weight about 250 kilograms. They mostly eat grass and leaves from lower tree branches, but can eat meat if they encounter it. They are not afraid of people, rather indifferent. That is why they were easy prey for sailors. As they can live long time without food they were also a good food storage on ships.

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