World’s Oldest Living Land Animal Celebrates Another Birthday, Is Almost 200 Years Old!

Jonathan, a giant tortoise and hailed as the world’s oldest living land animal, celebrated his 191st birthday this month. 

Now this is interesting because the tortoise has already lived through the United States Civil War, both World Wars, and even the rise and fall of the Soviet Union. Just wow. 

Not only that, but he hasoutlived presidents and Queens, as well as millions of people on this planet. He has also lived during that moment when sliced bread, the telephone, and the Internet were invented.


Jonathan is believed to have been hatched in 1832 before he was transferred to Saint Helena five decades later. Saint Helena is a remote volcanic tropical island west of the coast of southwestern Africa and east of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. It is also one of the remotest islands on Earth.

Last year, Nigel Phillips, the governor of the British overseas territory, granted him December 4th, 1832 as his official birthday.

Blind but still in good health

The 191-year-old tortoise is already blind and he has also lost his sense of smell. However, his veterinarian assured that he is still in good health. 

“Jonathan is in good health and all the indications at present make us hopeful that he will reach his third century – if indeed he hasn’t done so already!” the veterinarian told the Guinness World Records.

Jonathan currently spends most of his time roaming around the grounds of Governor Phillips’ house. The veterinarian is hopeful he will continue his activities for a long time to come.

Lindley Agustin

Lindley Agustin

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