KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — One of Zoo Knoxville's biggest draws is back. His name is Big Al.
He is back on display at his regular enclosure after taking a few months off during the colder months. He's an Aldabra Giant Tortoise, one of three males and two female Aldabra tortoises that live at the zoo. These kinds of animals are the second-largest species of tortoise on Earth, second only to the Galapagos tortoise.
Their life expectancy spans more than 200 years and weigh around 350 pounds on average.
Big Al spent the winter in a greenhouse, data balmy 90 degrees. He has been at Zoo Knoxville since 1974, and zookeepers there estimate that he's around 150 years old.
"He's a social butterfly," said Heather DeBord, who works with Zoo Knoxville. "He loves to see people, which is why I'm glad he's back on exhibit. He can watch them watch him, he likes people as much as people like him ... I met him on a field trip when I was in first grade and he was stretching his neck out to meet people even then."
His exhibit has lots of grass and clover to munch on. He also likes eating green peppers and sweet potatoes.