Did Galapagos Turtle Lineage Survive Ancient Blast?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 2, 2003   View Article

About 100,000 years ago the top of Volcano Alcedo in the Galápagos Islands exploded in a violent eruption that smothered the region in pumice and blew away all but one lucky lineage of the giant tortoises that lived there, according to a new study.

“The only lineage that probably survived the eruption was the one that repopulated the region,” said Luciano Beheregaray, a molecular ecologist at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.

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