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First tuatara reptile bred outside New Zealand

Thursday, February 04, 2016 - 00:44

Chester Zoo has announced the birth of the first tuatara reptile born outside New Zealand in 70 million years. Jim Drury reports.

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It's the first tuatara bred outside New Zealand in 70 million years. Born in Chester Zoo in England two months ago, it weighed barely four grams. Zoo chiefs waited until they were sure of the reptile's health before releasing the news. Scientific name Sphenodon punctatus, the species is thought to have been on Earth for 225 million years, predating most dinosaurs. Thought to be female, the reptile has been nicknamed 'Baby Isolde' after successful breeder Isolde McGeorge. She spent 38 years trying to breed tuatara - and hopes it won't take as long again next time round.

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First tuatara reptile bred outside New Zealand

Thursday, February 04, 2016 - 00:44