Scientists Believed This Giant Tortoise Was Vegetarian, Then Filmed It Hunting a Tern Chick

Researchers have caught an extraordinary event on camera: a Seychelles giant tortoise killing and eating a tern chick.


The incident, documented in the journal Current Biology Monday, is so surprising because tortoises are generally assumed to be vegetarians.

“This is completely unexpected behaviour and has never been seen before in wild tortoises,” study leader Dr. Justin Gerlach, director of studies at Peterhouse, Cambridge and affiliated researcher at the University of Cambridge’s Museum of Zoology, said in a Cambridge press release.


‘Vegetarian’ giant tortoise filmed attacking and eating seabird

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The video shows the tortoise slowly stalking the tern

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