Ecuador's environment minister Paulo Proano Andrade on Monday said that Diego, a libidinous giant tortoise, who is credited for his tireless efforts to save his species, has retired to an uninhabited island off the coast of Ecuador.
Andrade added that Diego return to to his native island of Espanola closes a sigificant chapter in the management of the Galapagos National Park.
"Fifteen tortoises from Española, including Diego, are going home after decades of breeding in captivity and saving their species from extinction," he wrote on Monday. "Their island receives them with open arms."
Cerramos un capítulo importante en la gestión del @parquegalapagos, 15 tortugas de #Espanola, incluyendo a #Diego, regresan a casa tras décadas de reproducirse en cautiverio y salvar a su especie de la extinción. Su isla las recibe con los brazos abiertos. (Noticia en desarrollo) pic.twitter.com/M4a4maQm9E
— Paulo Proano Andrade (@PauloProanoA) June 15, 2020
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) celebraetd Diego's return by tweeting that the giant tortoise had returned home to his "natural environment" in the Galapagos Islands.
"The giant tortoise is over 100 years old and produced around 800 offspring," the UNEP added.
Experts maintained that Diego's unstoppable libido was one of the most important reasons for the survival of his fellow giant tortoises on Espanola. When Diego arrived at the island there were just two males and 12 females of his species alive there but he played an important role in boosting their population to over 2,000.
Diego weighs about 80 kgs, is nearly 90cm long and 1.5 meters tall, if he stretches his legs and neck.
Notably, Galápagos Islands are located in the Pacific Ocean and they became famous after 19th century English naturalist Charles Darwin arrived here to study their breathtaking biodiversity.