An Australian zoo has welcomed the arrival of several critically endangered western swamp tortoise hatchlings.
Experts at Perth Zoo have been monitoring a batch of western swamp tortoise eggs for the past few weeks as part of a collaborative breeding program to save the species from extinction.
So far eight hatchlings have made their way out of their nests and have been busy exploring their habitats, the zoo said on May 24. Once matured, these tortoises will be released into a habitat in Western Australia, in an effort to bolster fragile populations.
Western swamp tortoises are one of Australia’s most endangered reptiles and, for more than a century, were believed to be extinct. But they were rediscovered in 1953 by a schoolboy who spotted one in the Swan Valley, according to Perth Zoo. Credit: Perth Zoo via Storyful