Island Tortoises by Jono More

Young Hood Island tortoises (Chelonoidis hoodensis) which have been reared in captivity are now old enough to be released into the wild. Here, they have been crated up for the boat journey from the tortoise breeding facility on Isla Santa Cruz to their native island of Espanola (formerly Hood). The original Espanola tortoise population was so heavily exploited by sailing ships that only 13 adults were found in the early 1970’s. Since then, captive breeding has boosted the species up to around 900 individuals.