A pair of tortoises who have been together for well over a century can no longer tolerate being in the same enclosure with each other, according to the zoo's director.
The pair- Bibi the female and Poldi the male- have been together for 115 years. They have lived for the past 36 years at the Reptilian Zoo Happ which is based in Klaganfurt, Austria. Before living in Austria, the couple was living at the Basel Zoo in Switzerland, according to the Austrian Times.
The zoo's director, Helga Happ, noticed that the two began to become agitated while they both were in the same enclosure.
"We get the feeling they can't stand the sight of each other anymore. They are both 115 years old – they have been together since they were young and grew up together, eventually becoming a pair. But for no reason that anyone can discover they seem to have fallen out, they just can't stand each other," Happ told the Austrian Times.
Reports indicate that one day Bibi became agitated with Poldi and bit his shell, taking a chunk out of it. Tortoises do not have teeth, but they have horned-shaped jaws which are very powerful. To prevent further injury to either animal, they were immediately separated.
Local reports indicated that the zoo's personnel are trying everything they can to reignite the spark, including feeding them special food and incorporating games inside the animal enclosure to get the tortoises to play with one another. None of it has worked so far.
"We have staff talking to and trying to engage the two in interacting, and we hope that they might find their harmony again. We were told that it's very rare that after so many years animals who are a pair will fall apart, but that's where we are. We hope though we can bring round a reconciliation," Happ said.