Turkey’s oldest tortoise turns 99
KOCAELİ – Anadolu Agency
Organized on April 13, a birthday celebration was held for the Aldabra giant tortoise (geochelone gigantean), an endangered species, along with a football derby prediction event for Tuki is also believed to be a clairvoyant.
For the Fenerbahçe-Galatasaray football match, which was played last night, yellow-red and yellow-blue balls were put in Tuki’s cage, having previously known the winners of five derbies in the past, besides a World Cup game.
On his 99th birthday, the tortoise moved toward the yellow-red ball, the colors of Galatasaray, which is currently second in the Turkish Super League eagerly seeking to overthrow first-place city rival Başakşehir.
Neşet Aydın, Tuki’s caretaker of 20 years, gave the animal a birthday gift made of vegetables and fruits.
The deputy general director of the zoo, Simge Çelik Atasoy said that 250 species of animals were under protection in the Faruk Yalçın Zoo and 62 out of them are endangered species. She added that Tuki was born in 1920 and also a member of a species risking extinction.
Speaking about the birthday and derby event, she said, “It is both Tuki’s birthday and we have a tradition that we have been doing for years, a prediction before the derby. We wanted it to make a prediction before the Fenerbahçe-Galatasaray derby, which coincided with his birthday. Its prediction is Galatasaray will win. Some friends are happy, some of them not about this.”