The Fernandina Tortoise, presumed extinct since 1906, has been rediscovered on a remote volcanic island in the Galapagos, during an Animal Planet funded expedition with the Galapagos National Park Ranger and the Galapagos Conservancy for the series Extinct or Alive.
The Fernandina Tortoise was discovered on February 17th 2019. Having positively identified tortoise scat in the field, the team led by Galante successfully located an active bedding site before finding the animal nearby. The tortoise was found sheltering from the equatorial sun, buried deep under a pile of brush.
The tortoise is in good health but underweight, unsurprising considering the sparse vegetation in the area she lived in on the volcano. She has been taken to the Fausto Llerena Tortoise Breeding Center, a national park facility in Isla Santa Cruz. This facility will ensure her ongoing survival, a healthy diet and perhaps, if sperm retention has occurred, fertile eggs and offspring. The television crew that follows Galante documented the entire expedition and it will be featured as an episode of Animal Planet’s Extinct Or Alive in the summer of 2019 worldwide.
Forrest Galante's hands-on approach to wildlife paired with his biological education, understanding, and respect for the natural world sets him far apart from your everyday adventurer. Forrest has the skill set to accomplish tasks few people on this planet are capable of. Due to his is amazing animal interactions and striking media, Forrest has gained an international reputation as the "perfect combination of Steve Irwin, Bear Grylls and Jacques Cousteau.