International

Valentine’s Day means love for Hugo the Galapagos tortoise


SYDNEY, FEB 14 — Formerly-lovesick Galapagos tortoise, Hugo, who resides at the Australian Reptile Park near Sydney, appears to have finally found his soulmate, zookeepers said Thursday.
The connection came after romantically frustrated Hugo took to online dating to find the dream partner.
After many let downs, the 68-year-old, middle aged for his species, found Estrella, a 21-year-old female Galapagos tortoise from Zoo Rostock in Germany.

The couple hit it off immediately and were unable to endure the torment of a long distance relationship. Arrangements have been made for Estrella to move in with Hugo in Australia within the coming months.

Zoo staff said a photo of Estrella is already sitting proudly on display in Hugo’s enclosure and that Hugo was getting washed at least once a week to stay looking smooth and shiny for his upcoming big date.
Head of Reptiles at the Australian Reptile Park Daniel Rumsey said he could not be more happy for Hugo.
“He’s got a bit of an extra bounce in his step now, and we can tell he’s just as excited as the staff are to meet her,” Rumsey said.

Hugo has been living at the Australian Reptile Park since 1963 having moved there as an infant. At 165 kg there is a lot of him to love and visitors to the park are far from immune to his charm.
Only time will tell what this reptilian romance will hold, although Rumsey may have a few ideas.
“Who knows,” he said, “maybe within the next few years we will have some baby Galapagos tortoises!” – XINHUA