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Harriet the turtle dead at age 175

Last Updated: Friday, June 23, 2006 | 3:09 PM ET

Harriet the turtle, the oldest known animal in the world, has died at the age of 175 in Australia.

"She had a very fairly acute heart attack and thankfully passed away quietly overnight," Dr. John Hangar of the Australia Zoo said Friday.

Harriet the turtle had been the star attraction at the Australia Zoo.
Harriet the turtle had been the star attraction at the Australia Zoo.

Harriet had been the star attraction at the zoo north of Brisbane for 17 years.

Last November, zoo officials held a celebration for Harriet's approximate birthday. DNA testing had suggested she was born about 1830.

The famed giant Galapagos land tortoise, who weighed 150 kilograms, had been recognized by the Guinness World Records book as the oldest living chelonian, or tortoise. The zoo said she was the oldest living animal in the world.

Until recently, she'd kept to a strict regimen which included going outside and warming up in the morning and then retreating to the shade once she'd had enough sun.

For more than a century, Harriet was originally thought to be a male and was called Harry.

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