The Australian Reptile Park’s resident giant Galapagos tortoise Hugo has a lot of candles to blow out today as he turns the exciting age of 69!

Hugo has called the Australian Reptile Park, just north of Sydney, home since 1963 after arriving at the wildlife sanctuary. He has now reached middle age and is expected to live well over 150 years. At 178kgs, he is fully grown and one of The Australian Reptile Park’s most popular animals.

In celebration of his birthday, Hugo was presented with a delicious snack featuring watermelon, rockmelon and squash decorated on a three-tier cake topped with an apple carved to look just like a tortoise!

Supplied: Australian Reptile Park

“Hugo is honestly one of the most amazing animals I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. He has such a great personality, and, in a way, it feels like he knows we’re celebrating his birthday! I could have sworn he smiled when he saw the cake,” head of Reptiles, Daniel Rumsey explains.

“I always say if you didn’t give Hugo’s shell a rub, you haven’t visited the Australian Reptile Park! It really does give you good luck!”

Hugo made international news earlier this year when he joined Tinder in search of a girlfriend. A zoo in Germany heard the call and proposed sending out a 21-year-old female named Estrella to be Hugo’s companion. With all the permits and agreements that come along with international animal transfers, Estrella is expected to arrive at the Australian Reptile Park by the end of the year.


Happy Birthday Hugo!

Watch Hugo devour his special birthday cake above!