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A 2-headed baby tortoise

When two heads aren't better than one (The Daily Telegraph)
May 30, 2003

IT'S bad enough sharing a bedroom with a sibling, but imagine how cramped this tortoise's shell must be.

The two-headed tortoise belongs to animal-loving South African Noel Daniels, who keeps the creature in his backyard.

Daniels owns seven orphaned tortoises - all the others have one head - and they all live with his budgies and pigeons in a dovecote.

He says the only difference between this tortoise and his others is the underside of shell, which is flat instead of rounded. "But the tortoise is normal and both heads feed on leaves, grass and softened rabbit pellets," he said.

"When the tortoise gets a fright, the heads each want to move in their own direction, and then the feet get all tangled up."

Two-headed tortoises are not unknown, but they are rare - the result of a genetic deviation during the development of the embryo.

The two heads should not affect the animal's lifespan.

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