Bringing an Extinct Tortoise Species Back to Life

Lonesome George may not have been alone after all.

Lonesome George, the iconic, last-of-his-kind Galápagos tortoise who shuffled off his mortal shell back in 2012, may not have been so lonesome after all: Scientists believe they can revive George’s species thanks to genetically similar tortoises discovered living on the flanks of a volcano. George was the last saddlebacked tortoise from Pinta Island, found wandering alone in 1972 and taken into human custody. Scientists hope to capture and separate tortoises with high levels of similar DNA to breed tortoises genetically closest to the original species, then release them back to Pinta and Floreana Islands in an effort to help restore their lost ecosystems.