Knoxville Zoo's Giant Tortoise Ends Dry Spell

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    Embed <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
  • Transcript

At the Knoxville Zoo, Al the giant tortoise hadn't seen a female turtle in almost 30 years. It's been about 20 years for his 90-year-old zoomate, Tex. Last Wednesday, Al quickly mated with a visiting female named Patches. So far, Tex is taking it slow with his potential mates.


Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

At 130 years old and 550 pounds, Al could only be a giant tortoise. At the Knoxville Zoo, Al hasn't seen a female in almost 30 years. His 90-year-old zoomate Tex hasn't seen a gal in about 20 years. Last Wednesday, their dry spell ended. In what the Knoxville News Sentinel describes as an exhibit fresh with clover, Al quickly made it with a visiting female named Patches.


Copyright © 2011 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.