Only two creatures from the Jurassic period persist in the African ecosystems: the crocodile and the tortoise. And, because the tortoise’s ancestry stretches back over 245 million years into the mists of the Permian Age (between the Carboniferous and Triassic periods about 290 to 245 million yeas ago), it is probable that the tortoise we see today looks much the same as the tortoise walking about under the feet of the dinosaurs. As to why more slow-moving tortoises are not trodden underfoot by moving herds, according to Maasai legend it is because they exude a scent similar to that of a hunting lion.
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