Chester Zoo has rescued a three-legged Ploughshare tortoise from illegal smugglers in Hong Kong, and he’s said to be one of the rarest in the world.
The newest’s tortoise resident – who has been named Hope – is one of the world’s rarest animals, with fewer than 300 remaining in the wild, and he now calls the UK’s largest charity zoo his home after being rescued by customs officials from a would-be wildlife trader who was found with a suitcase concealing 57 live and endangered tortoises when travelling from the Comoro Islands off the coast of East Africa in 2019.
Only 63 specimens of Ploughshare tortoise are said to “exist legally” outside of Madagascar as part of vital conservation breeding programmes battling to save the species.
“Chester Zoo is now home to four of these,” a spokesperson for the zoo said.
He added that the tortoise species was “highly prized for their distinctive gold and black shells”, and are known to fetch “exceptionally high prices” on the black market.
After being rescued, Hope was immediately transferred into the care of conservationists at Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden Wild Animal Rescue Centre in Hong Kong, where he was found to be missing his front left leg and claws on its hind left leg, which were said to possibly be due to a birth defect, or injury picked up when very young.
Experts in Hong Kong decided to fit support rollers under Hope’s lower shell to help with his balance and movement, and further modifications were then made to the rollers at Chester Zoo after he arrived in the UK.
Dr Gerardo Garcia, Curator of Lower Vertebrates and Invertebrates at Chester Zoo, said Hope’s prosthetic mobility support has been “specially-fitted to help him get around”.
“It works wonderfully well – he moves even quicker than his three neighbours.”
Conservationists at Chester Zoo now say they’re looking for Hope to live up to his name and eventually join an important European conservation-breeding programme – which is playing a vital role in saving this critically-endangered species from extinction.
“He’s settling in nicely to his new home,” Dr Garcia added.
“Hopefully, in several years’ time once he’s more developed, he’ll go on to produce offspring and contribute to the survival of the species thanks to the vital insurance population in conservation zoos.”
“This is a species that’s sadly under huge pressure for its survival and there’s a very real possibility that this species could be lost forever,” added Mike Jordan – Director of Animals and Plants at Chester Zoo.
“That’s why Hope is such an important addition to the zoo.
“We refuse to sit back and see this incredible species disappear and so our aim now is to maintain an ark population, by coming together with some of the world’s other leading conservation zoos to breed a genetically viable safety net population and prevent its extinction.”
The species is listed under the highest protection category of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITIES) – which prohibits all forms of international commercial trade – and is listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) having been poached to the very brink of extinction.
Featured Image – Chester Zoo
Trailer released for new Netflix drama series starring Michelle Keegan airing in the new year
The first trailer for a new Netflix show starring Michelle Keegan and Joanna Lumley has now been released.
In case you hadn’t heard, the highly-anticipated new crime drama show, which is titled Fool Me Once, is an adaptation of Harlan Coben’s popular novel, and is set to air on the streaming service as soon as 2024 arrives.
But now, the release of the first trailer has proved it looks brilliantly binge-worthy.
The eight-part series follows Manchester-born actress Michelle Keegan’s character, Maya Starn, who is a former special ops pilot struggling with the tragic murder of her husband, Joe, who is played by Richard Armitage.
Detective Sergeant Sami Kierce, who is portrayed by Adeel Akhtar, conducts the investigation into Joe’s death while wrestling with his own hidden truths.
Things start to get interesting though, when she observes via the nanny cam her supposedly deceased husband playing with their baby daughter in her own home.
Meanwhile, Maya’s niece and nephew embark on the journey to seek answers about their own mother’s murder which took place months ago.
But one question remains – could the two mysteries be related?
The first trailer for the show was released by Netflix at the end of last week, and it showcases a star-studded cast with the likes of Dame Joanna Lumley from Absolutely Fabulous, Adeel Akhtar from Sherwood, Emmett J Scanlan from Peaky Blinders, and Dino Fetscher from Paranoid.
The streaming service has unveiled a selection of first look images, showcasing a star-studded cast with the likes of Dame Joanna Lumley from Absolutely Fabulous, Adeel Akhtar from Sherwood, Emmett J Scanlan from Peaky Blinders, and Dino Fetscher from Paranoid.
Filming took place in Yorkshire, where production crews were spotted in the Burdock Way area near the centre of Halifax, but Michelle Keegan was also spotted filming in Manchester city centre back in May.
Fool Me Once will air on Netflix in the UK on Monday 1 January.
Featured Image – GMP
Timothée Chalamet thinks the sexiest British accent is… Hull?
Hollywood A-lister Timothée Chalamet has revealed the British accents he finds sexiest, and the results are unexpected.
The 27-year-old star of Wonka said that a Hull accent is up there as one of his favourites, along with Italian and French.
How does Timothée Chalamet even know about Hull’s existence, never mind know what the accent sounds like?
The star, who rose to astronomical fame back in 2017 with his portrayal of Elio in Call Me By Your Name, and has since starred in blockbusters such as Dune and Little Woman, revealed his favourite access on the current Wonka press tour, The Hoot reports.
Chalamet appeared on LadBible TV talking to Keegan-Michael Key, where they discuss the internet’s biggest debates.
In a segment where they debate the British accent, Chalamet goes on to reveal his top three British accents… and the answers are not what you would expect.
Firstly he admits his favourite is the Hull accent, he says: “I like the Hull accent. Hull is sexy”.
We’ve never thought of the Hull accent as particularly sexy before, but we will absolutely take it.
He then goes onto say: “I like Hull, Essex is my top three, and I like a middle-aged Yorkshire accent.”
We’re not sure the difference between a Yorkshire and a middle-aged Yorkshire accent, but what Timothée wants then Timothée will get.
In the comments, one person said: “I’m from Hull and nobody in Hull likes the Hull accent lol.”
Another joked: “suddenly i have the hull accent.”
And someone else wrote: “good day to have a hull accent.”
So thank you Timmy, we’d have to say that we wholeheartedly agree and that our accent is in fact, the sexiest of them all.
Next time we’d like to see you attempt a Yorkshire accent on the big screen, because we’re sure you’d absolutely smash it.