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Tortoises divorce after 115 years of marriage (+video)

Tortoises divorce: A pair of giant tortoises are getting a 'divorce' after living together in European zoos for 115 years.

By Contributor / June 13, 2012


There were confrontations, bruised feelings, and evening some biting. Now, someone is moving out.

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After living together in captivity for 115 years, a mated pair of giant tortoises at an Austrian zoo are refusing to share their cage.

Last week, the Austrian Times reported the turtles were getting a "divorce," after the female turtle, Bibi, bit off part of the male turtle, Poldi’s, shell.

Zoo staff reported the pair have reached the point where they “couldn’t stand each other,” and despite staff efforts to reconcile the reptiles, with aphrodisiacs and interactive games, nothing seems to have helped. 

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The Austrian Times didn’t specify what species of tortoise the pair are, but giant tortoises have been known to live up to 150 years.

Bibi and Poldi are both 115 years old, and have been together since they were young, eventually becoming a pair. Before moving to the Austrian zoo in Klagenfurt, they reportedly lived together at Basel Zoo in Switzerland.

It seems as the though the split was initiated by Bibi, who not only bit off part of Poldi’s shell, but launched several other attacks against her life-long mate. The turtles each weigh over 200 pounds, and with horn-rimmed mouths and powerful jaws, could easily harm each other if they wanted to.

For his own protection, Poldi was moved to a new bachelor's pad, er, enclosure.

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