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Gigantic Tortoise Found on Mt. Etna

A video circulating on Italian news sites shows what appears to be a gigantic tortoise being transported on a truck. An accompanying story explains that this tortoise "of colossal dimensions" was found recently at the base of Mt. Etna. A helicopter full of Japanese tourists spotted the creature. At first they thought it was a large, dark rock, until they noticed it was moving. The helicopter pilot alerted the earthquake authorities, who arrived and discovered that it was a gigantic tortoise. People were able to film the tortoise as it was loaded onto a truck and taken away to be studied.

None of this story is true. It comes from an Italian fake news site, Corriere del Mattino. A clue that the story is fake (in addition to the absurdity of the gigantic tortoise) is that it's authored by "Carlo Darvini" (i.e. Charles Darwin).

However, Corriere del Mattino didn't create the video, which actually shows the transportation of a piece of art by Kurdish sculptor Zirak Mira. (Although a soundtrack of Italian voices was added for effect.) The full video of the tortoise sculpture's transportation is on YouTube. [info from]

Zirak Mira's tortoise sculpture

This hoax recalls that image of a giant tortoise on a truck that was circulating last year. In that case, the image was actually a still from the 2006 Japanese monster movie Gamera the Brave.

Posted by The Curator on Wed May 14, 2014

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