Tortoise Jonathan, The Oldest Land Animal in the World, Celebrates His 190th Birthday


Can you imagine being born before the light bulb was invented and still walking on Earth today? Quite hard, right? Well, there is actually someone who has done exactly this—a Seychelles giant tortoise named Jonathan.

Jonathan recently celebrated his 190th birthday and is officially the oldest known land animal in the world. It is commonly believed that the tortoise was born in 1832, although there are indications that he might be up to 200 years old.

Since being discovered in 1882, Jonathan has been living his best life on St. Helen island. His longevity made him one of the island’s most famous residents and brought him a lot of perks. He is living on the grounds of a big mansion and even had a birthday party organized for him. As part of the festivities, the St. Helen department of tourism presented him with a cake made out of his favorite veggies.

According to his caretakers, Jonathan is showing some signs of old age, as he is likely blind and has a poor sense of smell. However, he remains energetic and even engages in occasional mating. 

“On mild days, he will sunbathe – his long neck and legs stretched fully out of his shell to absorb heat and transfer it to his core,” said his veterinarian Joe Hollins.