WATCH | 90-year-old endangered radiated tortoise becomes father of three

An endangered radiated turtle named Mr Pickles and his partner Mrs Pickles welcomed three new offspring named Dill, Gherkin, and Jalapeño respectively, at the age of 90 at the Houston zoo in United States.

The staff was astonished to find the eggs. Around the zoo’s closing time, Mrs Pickles was discovered by a herpetology keeper. The reptile and amphibian house’s animal care crew swiftly located the eggs and transported them there for protection, as reported by ABC7 Chicago. 

Given that the natives of Madagascar cannot thrive in Houston’s soil and that it is unlikely the eggs would have hatched had the keeper not been present, it is thought to be unusual.


Both Mr Pickles and the three newest Pickles are considered to be among the most genetically valuable tortoises in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plan. 

The over-collection of radiated tortoises for the illegal pet trade has put them in grave danger, and they are known to have a low birth rate. 

Together with Mrs Pickles, who moved there in 1996, Mr Pickes has lived at the Houston Zoo for 36 years. A baby was welcomed into the Pickles’ family in 1997. 

Up until they are big enough to securely reunite with their parents, the new additions will remain in the Reptile and Amphibian House.

Each Houston Zoo membership and entry fee will contribute a portion to assisting the Zoo’s Madagascar partners reestablish wildlife areas in order to conserve animals in the wild.