Found this little gem when walking down to Strictly Coffee.
The Tuatara is famous because it is the only survivor of an ancient group of reptiles that roamed the earth the same time as the dinosaurs.
It hasn't changed much in over 225 million years!! It is often referred to as a living fossil. It is only found in New Zealand.
The Tuatara once lived on the mainland of New Zealand, however they were driven to extinction. They are now found only in 37 off-shore islands around New Zealand. The total population on these islands is estimated to be between 50,000 and 100,000.
Having babies is a slow process.....only once every 2-5 years will the female be ready to mate. She lays 6-10 eggs in a sunny place and 11-16months later the baby tuatara hatches.
Here's the interesting part. The warmer the soil around the eggs, the greater the chance they will hatch into males and the cooler the soil, the greater the chance they will hatch into females.
If our earth warms, as the climate changes scientists predict all of the tuatara that hatch will be male. If they are unable to find a female they won't have more babies. The tuatara may be snuffed out!!!
They are not as BIG as this in real life...!!!
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