“He has pottered on, entirely unaware of the passing of time while wars, famines, plagues, kings and queens, and even nations have come and gone,” the animal’s veterinarian Joe Hollins said.
Jonathan the Seychelles tortoise is reminding people of his record after Methuselah the Australian lungfish made headlines for holding the record for being the oldest alive aquarium fish.
According to Guinness World Records, Jonathan 2019, the 190-year-old reptile is the oldest known alive terrestrial animal in the world.
The 440-pound beast lives on St. Helena island, which is about a thousand miles off the coast of southwest Africa. It has endured 39 US presidents, two world wars, and seven British kings.
According to the animal’s veterinarian, Joe Hollins, “he has pottered on, entirely unconscious to the passage of time, while wars, famines, plagues, kings and queens, and even nations have come and gone.”
Methuselah, a Californian who enjoys belly rubs, is the world’s oldest living aquarium fish.
“Jonathan has attained iconic status on the island and is a symbol of perseverance, endurance, and survival,” he continued.
According to Matt Joshua, the island of St. Helena’s director of tourism, Jonathan, the world’s oldest turtle, is thought to be 190 years old, however he may be older.
According to Joshua, who spoke to CNN, “Jonathan could potentially be 200 because the facts of his landing on the island is not correct and because there is no real documentation of his birth.”
According to CNN, a photo shot between 1882 and 1886 of a fully mature Jonathan, or at least 50 years old, grazing at Plantation House, where he currently lives, shows that he would have hatched about 1832.
Sir William Grey-Wilson, who later served as governor of St. Helena, received the tortoise as a gift, the source claims.
If they weren’t eaten first, Hollins told The Washington Post, “it was pretty traditional for [tortoises] to be used as diplomatic gifts around the world.”
The average lifespan of a gigantic land tortoise is 150 years, but Jonathan, who is now blind and has lost his sense of smell, has lived longer.
After caring for the animal for the past 13 years, Hollins told The Washington Post that it was a “big duty, but an honor and a joy for a vet to see to the requirements of the oldest known live land animal in the world.”
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Up until recently, Tu’i Malila, a tortoise, held the record for the oldest turtle. In 1965, the animal perished.
In 2022, St. Helena intends to commission a stamp in Jonathan’s honor and perhaps declare a public holiday in his honor.
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