Tue. Oct 4th, 2022

Two-headed tortoise is turning 25 years old with a special celebration

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A two-headed tortoise in Switzerland is celebrating his 25th birthday on Saturday. 

Janus, a Greek tortoise named after the two-headed Roman god, hatched at the Geneva Natural History Museum in 1997 — and still lives there today. 

Because he has two heads, as well as two hearts, two lungs and two personalities, Janus would not have survived in the wild. He can’t move both heads into his shell to avoid predators, as Reuters reported.

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At the Geneva Natural History Museum, Janus is cared for by Angelica Bourgoin and a team of people.

The team feeds him organic salads, gives him daily massages and baths and takes him for regular walks, according to Reuters.

Janus, a two-headed Greek tortoise named after the Roman god with two heads will celebrate his 25th birthday at the Natural History Museum in Geneva, Switzerland on Saturday. 

Janus, a two-headed Greek tortoise named after the Roman god with two heads will celebrate his 25th birthday at the Natural History Museum in Geneva, Switzerland on Saturday. 
(REUTERS/Pierre Albouy)

Staff also check the reptile’s general condition, as well as his eyes, neck, breastplate and mobility every day, according to the museum website.

Janus even rides on a custom-made skateboard, Reuters reported.

“I think it’s because of the attention we give him and our devotion that he’s still here today,” Bourgoin told Reuters.

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Janus’ two personalities can sometimes lead to conflict, according to Reuters. 

Janus is believed to be the oldest bicephalic tortoise in the world, according to his carers at the Geneva Natural History Museum. 

Janus is believed to be the oldest bicephalic tortoise in the world, according to his carers at the Geneva Natural History Museum. 
(REUTERS/Pierre Albouy)

“The right head is more curious, more awake — it has a much stronger personality,” Bourgoin said. 

“The left head is more passive and loves to eat.”

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Bourgoin believes Janus is the oldest bicephalic tortoise in the world. 

This weekend, he has a special party to celebrate his 25th birthday, Reuters reported.

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The museum is holding several events on Saturday including opportunities for visitors to take selfies with Janus and learn more about the unique tortoise, according to a Facebook post.

Reuters contributed reporting to this article.



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