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Stolen 100-Year-Old Tortoise Returns To Queens Animal Shelter

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A stolen tortoise has slowly and steadily made its way back to a Queens animal shelter.

The 100-year-old African spurred tortoise, named Millennium, was taken from the Alley Pond Environmental Center last week.

Sources told CBS2 a Connecticut man called the NYPD on Monday, claiming he traded his own turtle for the missing one, and then saw a report that it had been stolen.

Police are investigating the alleged trade, sources said.

The NYPD recovered the reptile and returned it to the shelter Tuesday.

"We're definitely relieved," Venus Hall, an educator at the environmental center, told WCBS 880's Peter Haskell. "Our vet did come this afternoon to check him about and he believes to feel that he is in good condition."

Millennium was stolen from an outdoor enclosure.

"At this point, we keep him in – both of our tortoises indoors – in the evening time," Hall said.

The shelter posted video on its Facebook page of the tortoise back home enjoying a big plate lettuce and carrots.

Alley Pond is a nonprofit educational organization that advocates for sustainable environmental policies and practices.

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