The Galapagos Tortoises in Their Relation to the Whaling Industry — Charles Haskins Townsend, Director of the New York Aquarium

    The sizes attained by tortoises of the Galapagos were probably as great as those recorded of tortoises taken from islands of the Indian Ocean, one of which, now in the BFitish Museum, had a weight of eight hundred and seventy pounds. They may have been even greater, but the weights of the monsters described by whalers in the following pages were estimates only. In the matter of length we are better informed. There are specimens in European museums in which the straight length of carapace exceeds four feet and in American museums, three and a half feet, Porter describes the taking of tortoises on Indefatigable Island in 1812 “of an enormous size, one of which measured five feet and a half long.”


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