Hugo’s 65th birthday party!

HE may be pushing the human retirement age but Hugo the enormous Galapagos tortoise showed no signs of slowing down when the cake arrived on Tuesday.

Surrounded by young admirers, Hugo marked his 65th birthday with a cake designed to suit his diet of lucerne hay, lettuce, vegetables and the odd hibiscus flower or apple.

With a Mad Hatter theme, Hugo’s party was complete with a rendition of Happy Birthday and presents.

But while Hugo’s age may seem impressive to humans, he has barely reached middle age for his vulnerable species.

Arriving at the Reptile Park as a 13-year-old in 1963, Hugo is only now approaching middle age for his species.

Supervisor of reptiles Billy Collett said Hugo was defying the human stereotypes of his age group.

‘‘He’s full of testosterone and he’s keen to breed,’’ Mr Collett said.

‘‘The Galapagos tortoises are quite hard to source but we’re keen to try and get a female for the park and look at a breeding program.’’

The South American tortoises typically have a lifespan between 150 to 200 years.

Mr Collett said Tuesday’s birthday party also included a Burmese python, geese and koalas celebrating the milestone.

‘‘Hugo loves attention,’’ he said.

‘‘The sun came out, which was nice, and he just sat back and enjoyed himself.’’

Hugo had an INCREDIBLE cake provided by Mudda Cake. It included 10kg of dry ingredients, they were:

  • 40 Free Range eggs
  • 2.25lt of oil
  • 9kg of White Chocolate
  • 3lt of Cream
  • 12kg of White Fondant
  • 1.8kg of Rice Krispy Treats – Mixture of marshmallows, rice bubbles and butter
  • 250g Butter
  • Airbrushing Liquids
  • 4 packets of scotch finger biscuits
  • Fondant Rocks and 65

All presented on a 900 x 900 16mm thick board. Completely edible other than his head (Styrofoam covered in fondant) and plastic grass.

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