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Diego the Tortoise Retires: Single Handedly Saved Species

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San Lumen
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Diego the Tortoise Retires: Single Handedly Saved Species

Postby San Lumen » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:27 pm

https://abcnews.go.com/International/ga ... d=68231846

A giant Galapagos tortoise named Diego believed to be 130 years old is returning home to the Galapagos islands after having enough relations with females he is believed to have singly handedly saved his species from extinction. The population went from 15 to 2000 and its believed Diego fathered nearly 800 children and as many as 50 percent of all living tortoises of his species are his descendants.

This brings to an end a years long breeding program at San Diego Zoo and will mean there is a population of tortoises for years to come.

With all the bad news about the environment stories like this give hope. If this species can be saved so can others.

What's your thoughts NSG?
Last edited by San Lumen on Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:45 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Greater Catarapania
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Postby Greater Catarapania » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:46 pm

If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.
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San Lumen
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Postby San Lumen » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:47 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

why's that and is that a bad thing?

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TURTLESHROOM II
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Postby TURTLESHROOM II » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:48 pm

Men around the world look on with envy as Diego has the time of his century-spanning life. What a tortoise! What fun that turtle must have had!
Last edited by TURTLESHROOM II on Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Kowani » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:49 pm

San Lumen wrote:
Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

why's that and is that a bad thing?

Small gene pools mean genetic defects later on.
I also don’t know how varied the gene pool was prior to Diego’s insertion, so take this with a grain of salt.
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The Liberated Territories
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Postby The Liberated Territories » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:50 pm

Absolute chad turtle
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Postby Mastodon » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:51 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.


I often wonder that myself when I hear stories like this.

San Lumen wrote:why's that and is that a bad thing?


There is required a certain amount of genetic diversity for populations to remain healthy and stable.

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TURTLESHROOM II
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Postby TURTLESHROOM II » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:54 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.


He's afraid of incest. However, he would be mistaken. Some species, such as men, can be restored from a single pair of two genetically unrelated inviduals (although it takes hundreds of thousands of years and requires mutation for the first few generations of inbreeding to not collapse like the Spanish Habsbergs).

With several thousand, and assuming at least one other male besides Diego, this is neglible at best. Diego fathered offspirng with countless female turtles of his kind, making most of them half siblings at best. Half-sibling DNA is more stable than full-sibilng DNA and passes on less genetic flaws and corruption.

IIRC, Diego was not the last male of his species, so a few lightweights had some side ho's every now and then. Those contribute to genetic diversity. Diego's spawn will need to mate heavily them them. The tortoises will all have to be arranged into pairs and screwed with hatchlings from other males.

Mate Diego's seed with the turtles from the other males. For the next generation, and probably more than that, do this exclusively. Eventually, the gene pool will be populated enough that they can all breed normally.
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Postby Lamenia » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:54 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

Genetic diversity is more important for humans then reptiles. Nevertheless, this may still be a problem.

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Postby Greater Catarapania » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:55 pm

San Lumen wrote:
Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

why's that and is that a bad thing?

50% of the population has 50% of its genes from a single source. That could be a bad thing. It might not be that bad. It's too early to tell.

The question is how many bum alleles the old tortoise has. They're going to be overrepresented in the the next generation of tortoises, and pity the poor tortoise that ends up homozygous for one of 'em. That could be as high as 1 in 32.

Still, having a large, low diversity population is better than a tiny one teetering on the brink of extinction. Diego did what he could for his species, and ought to be respected for that. But one tortoise can only do so much.
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Postby TURTLESHROOM II » Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:55 pm

The Liberated Territories wrote:Absolute chad turtle


I concur. :clap:
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Postby Ors Might » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:04 pm

Nice
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Postby The East Marches II » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:04 pm

Diego was doing work. Give that Tortoise a medal!

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Postby Yawkland » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:05 pm

This tortoise lived through the Eastern Front
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Postby Ethel mermania » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:18 pm

Jealous, so jealous.
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Postby Xmara » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:30 pm

Pros: Species potentially saved from extinction

Cons: We may have a problem if 50% of the current population is made up of siblings and half-siblings...
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Postby Rojava Free State » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:33 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.


Yeah if he's the dad of every galapagos tortoise that was born recently, doesn't that mean that when the children have kids, the offspring will be the product of major league incest?

The galapgos tortoise is doomed
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Postby The Holy Therns » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:45 pm

Must've smoked quite a cigarette after that one.
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Postby Ethel mermania » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:46 pm

The Holy Therns wrote:Must've smoked quite a cigarette after that one.

Well deserved cigarette
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Postby Bombadil » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:49 pm

Ethel mermania wrote:
The Holy Therns wrote:Must've smoked quite a cigarette after that one.

Well deserved cigarette


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Postby Aclion » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:50 pm

San Lumen wrote:
Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

why's that and is that a bad thing?

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Postby Heloin » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:55 pm

Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.

It's not as massive of a problem as people let on to be honest. And when it's a choice of minor genetic issues coming up down the road or extermination of you're species I think one is clearly a bit worse.
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Postby Ors Might » Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:57 pm

Whatever the future holds, it is undeniable fact that Diego is the biggest chad amongst all species on this globe. He is forevermore a legend in our hearts.
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Postby Seythennia » Sun Jan 19, 2020 7:09 pm

Honestly, I'd rather have a few thousand tortoises with some dozens coming out like our old friend Charles II than no tortoises at all. Sweet home Galapagos Islands?

Diego has boldly banged where no tortoise has banged before.
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Postby Ifreann » Sun Jan 19, 2020 7:12 pm

Rojava Free State wrote:
Greater Catarapania wrote:If he's single handedly (clawedly?) responsible for 50% of the species, methinks there's gonna be some problems with genetic diversity down the road.


Yeah if he's the dad of every galapagos tortoise that was born recently, doesn't that mean that when the children have kids, the offspring will be the product of major league incest?

The galapgos tortoise is doomed

Not really. As long as zookeepers keep an eye on how related any mating pair are they should be able to avoid creating any Galapagos Habsburgs.
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