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  • File photo dated August 15, 2008 showing giant tortoise Lonesome George, at the Reproduction and Breeding Center of Galapagos National Park.

    File photo dated August 15, 2008 showing giant tortoise Lonesome George, at the Reproduction and Breeding Center of Galapagos National Park. | Photo: EFE

The tortoise was the last specimen of its species and an icon of the Galapagos Islands, known worldwide for its rich biodiversity.

The desiccated body of the giant tortoise known as Lonesome George, the last of its kind, will be returned to the Galapagos Islands, the Ecuadorean archipelago where it lived and died, once the place where it will be exhibited is completed.

An official at the Environment Ministry told EFE that George will arrive at Santa Cruz Island this Friday on a plane of the Ecuadorean air force and will be installed in a reserved room until Feb. 23.

From then on it will be exhibited to the public in a newly built gallery where its preservation is guaranteed.

The tortoise was the last specimen of the Chelonoidis abingdoni species, and during it last 40 years became a symbol of the Ecuadorean archipelago, known worldwide for its rich biodiversity.


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