A tortoise's beginnings


A tortoise's beginnings



One of the most iconic pieces of the CDF’s audiovisual collection, an one intimately related to the scientific work in Galapagos, is the image above: a slide of which no accurate information regarding date or authorship has been found so far.

It represents the hatching of a giant tortoise’s egg, and it has been used in countless communication and education campaigns, including "La conservación en Galápagos" (Conservation in Galapagos). Such campaigns, prepared in the 80s and 90s, consisted in a numbered set of slides, a typed script, and an audio cassette with the recording of such script, read aloud.

As many other representative pieces at the CDF, this document encapsulates both knowledge and memory. In terms of knowledge, the picture documents a biological process (the reproduction of giant tortoises) that was scarcely known until that moment, as well as the conservation-related research aimed at reproducing a highly endangered species in captivity. On the other hand, in terms of social and scientific memory, the slide presents the outcome of a long, hard work involving not only international scientists, but also local collaborators, students and the Galapagoan community in general.

Unknown author. [Tortoise hatching egg]. [Slides]. [N.d.] : [n.d.], [n.d.]. [N.d.] : ill. b/w : 3 x 5 cm. DDC 508. Well preserved.

  Subject categories: Conservation | Herpetology | History of science | Natural history
  Keywords: Photos | Reptiles | Slides | Tortoises
  Time framework: 1980


Text & picture: (edgardo.civallero@fcdarwin.org.ec).
Publication date: 1 May 2022
Last update: 1 May 2022