Sexploits of one giant tortoise save his species

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon

One male tortoise can almost single-handedly be credited for saving his entire species. Diego the Tortoise, who's over 100-years-old, is a Galapagos giant tortoise who has procreated hundreds of times.

He is the father of an estimated 800 offspring, thus rebuilding his species' population located on Espanola, the southernmost island in the Galapagos Archipelago.

Diego's species, Chelonoidis hoodensis, is only found in the wild on Espanola.

50 years ago, Diego's species consisted of two males and 12 females, but they were too far spread out across Espanola to reproduce.

Diego currently lives at a tortoise breeding center on the island and is the dominant male of the three assigned to repopulate the area.

Diego weighs about 175 pounds and is nearly 35 inches long and five feet when he tall when he stretches out.

"He's a very sexually active male reproducer. He's contributed enormously to repopulating the island," said Washington Tapia, a tortoise preservation specialist at Galapagos National Park, told phys.org.

See photos of Galapagos giant tortoises below:

22 PHOTOS
Galapagos giant tortoises
See Gallery
Galapagos giant tortoises
A young Galapagos giant tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra) is seen together with its mother Nigrita (back) and father Jumbo (R) at an enclosure at the zoo in Zurich December 17, 2014. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann (SWITZERLAND - Tags: ANIMALS ENVIRONMENT)
Galapagos giant tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra) is seen at an enclosure at the zoo in Zurich December 17, 2014. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann (SWITZERLAND - Tags: ANIMALS ENVIRONMENT)
A Galapagos giant tortoise is pictured during its annual weighing at Riga Zoo July 12, 2012. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins (LATVIA - Tags: SOCIETY ANIMALS)
A giant tortoise is seen on a road at Santa Cruz island at Galapagos National Park August 23, 2013. Picture taken August 23, 2013. REUTERS/Jorge Silva (ECUADOR - Tags: ENVIRONMENT SOCIETY TRAVEL ANIMALS)
Dirk the giant Galapagos tortoise clambers on top of his younger co-resident Dolly in their enclosure at London Zoo, August 25, 2011. REUTERS/Andrew Winning (BRITAIN - Tags: SOCIETY ANIMALS ENVIRONMENT)
Tortoises with numbers marked on their backs are seen at Galapagos National Park in Santa Cruz September 15, 2008. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (Ecuador)
Giant tortoises are seen in their natural environment at Santa Cruz Island, January 29, 2001. Santa cruz is part of the Galapagos Islands and has a myriad of exotic species including iguanas, flightless cormorants, sea lions and the famous Galapagos giant tortoises, a mix that inspired 19th century naturalist Darwin to devise his theory of evolution. The Galapagos islands should make a full recovery from the oil spill that tarnished its sandy shores, a sign of hope for the hundreds of unique species there, scientists said. GG
A giant tortoise is seen at its shelter at Galapagos National Park in Santa Cruz September 15, 2008. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
The sole surviving giant Galapagos tortoise known as Lonesome George walks away from a pool on Santa Cruz island May 9, 2009. The giant tortoise is just one of the many species affected by the introduction of extraneous species of plants and animals over the years. The Ecuadorean government is working hard to eliminate the extraneous species since the UNESCO confirmed them in 2007 as serious threats to the Islands' unique habitat. Picture taken May 9. REUTERS/Teddy Garcia (ECUADOR ENVIRONMENT POLITICS)
Two Galapagos giant tortoises gather during their annual weighing at Riga Zoo July 12,2012. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins (LATVIA - Tags: SOCIETY ANIMALS)
A giant tortoise passes near a dog stands on Santa Cruz Island, January 29, 2001. Santa cruz is part of the Galapagos Islands and has a myriad of exotic species, including iguanas, flightless cormorants, sea lions and the famous Galapagos giant tortoises, a mix that inspired 19th century naturalist Darwin to devise his theory of evolution. The dog is an introduced animal to the archipelago. The Galapagos islands should make a full recovery from the oil spill that tarnished its sandy shores, a sign of hope for the hundreds of unique species there, scientists said. GG/HB
Giant tortoises are seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja(ECUADOR)
Giant tortoises are seen in their natural environment at Santa Cruz Island, January 29, 2001. Santa Cruz is part of the Galapagos Islands and has a myriad of exotic species including [iguanas, flightless cormorants, sea lions] and the famous Galapagos giant tortoises, a mix that inspired 19th century naturalist Darwin to devise his theory of evolution. The Galapagos Islands should make a full recovery from the oil spill that tarnished its sandy shores, a sign of hope for the hundreds of unique species there, scientists said.
Giant tortoises are seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
A giant tortoise is seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja(ECUADOR)
Giant tortoises are seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
A giant tortoise is seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
George the giant tortoise is seen in the national park of the Galapagos islands in this April 29, 2007 file photo. While scientists search for a mate for "Lonesome George" -- the last known survivor of a species of Galapagos tortoise -- some say the effort to fend off extinction may be in vain. Even if a mate is found, George has not been interested in reproducing in the past and may not know how, former keepers and others who have worked with him said. To match feature TORTOISE-GEORGE/ REUTERS/Guillermo Granja/Files (ECUADOR)
Giant tortoises are seen on the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over the damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
George, the giant tortoise is seen in the national park of the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
Giant tortoises are seen in the Galapagos islands April 29, 2007, where British naturalist Charles Darwin conceived his theory of evolution. Growing tourism has conservationists worried over damage to the volcanic islands' unique ecosystem. REUTERS/Guillermo Granja (ECUADOR)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners