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Shell Wishes: Tortoise Is Still Considered Young as He Celebrates 50th Birthday With Watermelon Cake


This Galapagos tortoise may be celebrating his 50th birthday, but make no mistake, he's still considered a youngster.

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Cerro the tortoise, who lives at the Perth Zoo in Australia, marked a half-century by munching on a cake made of watermelon, kiwi and strawberries. The celebratory numbers, "50," were carved out of pumpkin.

"With Cerro, it's all about the food," his zookeeper Emily Trainer said to the Associated Press. "He will follow our keepers around all day, every day, hoping to get a treat."

Which is no surprise, considering Cerro's whopping weight of more than 440 pounds. 

"What better way to celebrate his 50th birthday than with a watermelon cake?" Trainer said. 

According to Trainer, tortoises have a poor sense of smell, so they tend to enjoy brightly colored food, including watermelon, capisicum and banana.

Even at the ripe age of 50, the zoo insists he's still young for his breed: "The oldest Galapagos Tortoise on record lived to 175, so Cerro is still considered a spring chicken," they wrote in a Facebook post.

But, that doesn't stop the tortoise, who was originally born in the San Diego Zoo, from taking it easy most days.

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"Cerro tends to lead a peaceful, lazy life," Trainer said. "He enjoys a dip in his pond [and] a play in his mud wallow."

Because Galapagos tortoises tend to reach more than 100 years old, the zoo expects many more lazy days ahead in Cerro's lifetime.

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