HERDS of giant tortoises – two metres in size – were roaming the plains of Spain two million years ago.
A 10-year study by Spanish and Greek researchers has identified the genus of tortoises that had a large shell covered with protective scales.
“We’re not just talking about any tortoise; this is the largest that lived in Europe, whose size likely exceeded that of those living today in the Galapagos Islands,” said researcher Adan Perez-Garcia.
The researchers, who dubbed the animals ‘Titanochelon’ due to their size, took on research that started in the 1920s in Spain.
Madrid’s National Museum of Natural Sciences provided a treasure trove of fossilised materials to back up the study.