And just when she was beginning to come out of her shell…

They say it comes in threes, and boy are they right. First Aaron Spelling, then Patsy Ramsey, and now Harriet, a tortoise thought to have once belonged to Charles Darwin.

Harriet, a 322-pound Galapagos tortoise thought to have once belonged to naturalist Charles Darwin, has died in a Queensland wildlife park at age 176, carrying to her grave the mystery of her origins.

John Hangar, a senior veterinarian at the Australia Zoo on the Sunshine Coast, said the reptile suffered a heart attack Thursday.

Oh well… other tortoises at the park were getting sick of the “you young turtles today…” grumpiness anyway.

It seems like only yesterday we were celebrating Harriet’s 167th birthday. One would have hoped that an animal who may have once belonged to Darwin would have at least been able to win one of his awards on its way out, but not Harriet.

As a result of studying Harriet, Charles Darwin noted the following as proof of his theory of evolution: In earlier centuries, Galapagos turtles grew slowly, were timid and never had the ability nor inclination to roam far from their original birth places. But, for some unknown reason, the tortoises started developing the ability to be plucked from their homes by evolutionary scientists and ending up in places such as Plymouth, England and later in Steve Irwin’s Australia Zoo.

Evolution is easier when there’s an evolutionist there to help it along.

Rest in peace, Harriet.


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