stella the tortoise

The name Stella caused some gender confusion early in his life.

This is Stella.

He's a 30something-year-old sulcata tortoise. He keeps tabs on one of the biology labs at Union College.

Stella ended up at Union about five years ago when a guy called up the the bio department to ask if they were interested in a tortoise (they were). Stella could be at Union for a long time to come -- sulcatas can live to be more than 50 years old.

He -- yep, Stella is a guy -- now patrols his bio lab (a baby gate keeps him from wandering out into the hall), munching on hay and the occasional grape. He's become a bit of a celebrity -- campus visitors (for example, us) actually stop by to see him. We didn't get the sense that the fame had gone to his head.

Video of Stella in action is after the jump.


We used to have a rooster named Stella. I think he had some issues over his gender-bending name as well.

That is the fastest tortise I've ever seen! I might need to borrow him so he can teach me a faster running pace.

After seeing Stella, my 2-year-old wanted to know if Mommy had a turtle at her work, too.

I think Stella could beat my dog in a foot race...

Wait, this sounds familiar.

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