lonesome george, the pinta island tortoise, has the “perfect” extinction story

LonesomeGeorge tortoise 1500 crop

THE LAST OF THE PINTA ISLAND TORTOISES died in 2012. Known as Lone­some George, his story is “the per­fect ex­tinc­tion story. It fea­tures a charis­matic char­acter with a rec­og­niz­able face, an ob­vious vil­lain, and the tire­less ef­forts of nat­u­ral­ists. The pop­u­la­tion of the Pinta Is­land tor­toise species was dec­i­mated by whalers hunting and eating them during the 19th cen­tury Zo­ol­o­gist József Vágvölgyi dis­cov­ered George in 1971 and brought him into cap­tivity. READ MORE