“The immortal ‘Lonesome George’ will be remembered as the last of his sub-species of Galapagos tortoise.” ~Andrew Wyatt
Lonesome George at Wildlife Preservations. (Photo by Zoë Lescaze) He was nosing his way out of an egg the size of a billiard ball as Picasso put the final dabs of paint on Ma Jolie. He was wracked with adolescent angst as the Jazz Age raged across the sea. He hit his sexual prime in the Galápagos as German troops invaded Poland.
Perhaps the war was an omen. Sex—or a severe lack thereof—was the downfall of Lonesome George, the last member of the now extinct Pinta Island subspecies of Galápagos tortoise. The giant reptile lived out his days at the Charles Darwin Research Station, where tireless researchers tried to coax him into coitus with eligible, genetically similar she-tortoises. These prospective mates were, no doubt, seductive as far as enormous, leathery behemoths go, but George snubbed them all.
Maybe it was the pressure; the world watched anxiously for years, praying…
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