Jonathan is the longest living turtle in the world, this turtle is 190 years old – Wild Nature

Jonathan, the world’s oldest living land animal, has earned another Guinness World Records title!

Celebrating his 190th birthday this year, Jonathan is now the oldest tortoise ever.

His official record title is oldest chelonian – a category which encompasses all turtles, terrapins and tortoises.


Jonathan the tortoise pictured in December 2021

Jonathan has “come through the winter well”, as per an update from the St Helena Government. “He grazes well now, but is unaware of food if we simply place it on the ground.”

“The Veterinary Section is still feeding him by hand once a week to boost his calories, vitamins, minerals and trace elements, as he is blind and has no sense of smell.”

“His hearing though is excellent and he loves the company of humans, and responds well to his vet Joe Hollins’ voice as he associates him with a feast.”

The previous oldest chelonian was Tu’i Malila, a radiated tortoise that lived to be at least 188. Presented to the royal family of Tonga by Captain Cook c.1777, Tu’i Malila remained in their care until its death in 1965.

Jonathan is believed to have been born c. 1832, thus making him 190 years old in 2022.

Jonathan’s age is an estimation based on the fact that he was fully mature, and hence at least 50 years old, when he arrived in St Helena from the Seychelles in 1882. In all likelihood, he is even older than we think.


Jonathan (left) c.1882-86, on the grounds of Plantation House, St Helena

His estimated age was further supported when an old photograph taken between 1882 and 1886 was uncovered. It showed a fully-grown Jonathan grazing on some grass in the garden of Plantation House – the residence of the Governor of St Helena, where Jonathan has spent most of his life.

Since Jonathan was gifted to Sir William Grey-Wilson all those years ago, 31 more governors have come and gone. Jonathan is still plodding around the same grounds today, where he enjoys the company of three other giant tortoises: David, Emma and Fred.

“He is a local icon, symbolic of persistence in the face of change,” – Joe Hollins, Jonathan’s vet

Jonathan has lived through some major human milestones, such as:

• 1838 – the first photograph of a person was taken

• 1876 – the first telephone call was made

• 1878 – the first incandescent lightbulb was invented

• 1887 – the Eiffel Tower, the world’s tallest iron structure, was completed

• 1903 – the first power-driven flight took to the skies, flown by the Wright brothers (both USA)

• 1969 – Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin (both USA) became the first people on the Moon


Jonathan with his vet, Joe Hollins

As the world around him evolved and advanced, Jonathan remained the same. To this day, his main interests are sleeping, eating and mating.

According to vet Joe, Jonathan “enjoys the sun but on very hot days takes to the shade. 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.”

When it’s cold, the world’s oldest tortoise prefers to “dig himself into leaf mould or grass clippings and remain there all day.”

Despite some of his senses now failing him, such as his sight and smell, Jonathan still seems to have plenty of energy left!

“In spite of his age, Jonathan still has good libido and is seen frequently to mate with Emma and sometimes Fred – animals are often not particularly gender-sensitive!” Joe revealed.

Among Jonathan’s favourite foods are cabbage, cucumber, carrot, apple and other seasonal fruits.

“He loves banana, but it tends to gum up his mouth. Lettuce hearts, though not very nutritious, are a favourite.”

We wish Jonathan a very happy 190th year full of his favourite treats!

Related Posts

WE FOUND A BIG SIX IN A CAVE It’s an ancient golden vase and a fierce dragon serpent

The explorers discover incredible treasures: an ancient golden vase and a fierce dragon snake in a cave A group of explorers who went deep into a mysterious cave have made…

Read more

ten incredible texts from our ancient past

there aɾe lιTeɾalƖy thoυsaпds of iпcredible texts tҺaT Һaʋe sυrvιved fɾom the aпcieпt world, which are etched oпto copper, beaυtifυƖly iпscɾibed oп papyrυs, chiρped oпTo tableTs, aпd eʋeп wɾitTeп υsiпg…

Read more

Uncovering Hidden Treasures Beneath Mountain Rocks: An Expert Gold Digger Shares Tips For Unlocking The Secrets Of Gold Deposits

Finding gold is a dream for many people, but for those who work in the mining industry, it can become a reality. Th? ?isc?ʋ??? w?s th? ??s?lt ?? ? c?м?in?ti?n…

Read more

Fortune found in abandoned place

In this exciting video series, Ginho da Selva takes us exploring abandoned places in search of hidden fortunes. In this second installment of the “5 Fortunes Found in Abandoned Places”…

Read more

The natural man finds a treasure to repair the house. 350-year-old underground treasure… 1 big surprise! Wow unbelievable..

YOUR EXISTING AD GOES HERE According to The Sun, recently, a man named David Goɾton decided to renovate his Old Cottage puƄ in the coastal town of Margate, in the…

Read more

ReveƖando la mуѕterіouѕ “ot Cave”: una aventᴜra y una recomρensa de oro

As we narrate an exciting nativa of adventures and discoveries, prepare to be transported into a world of mystery and te. The final cave, wrapped in ghostly and whispered tales,…

Read more

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *