I’m not sure this tortoise WANTS to retire, but he’s had a good run . . .

Back in 1977, there were less than 20 giant tortoises left on Española Island, which is part of the Galapagos.  So researchers started a breeding program and brought in a male tortoise named Diego that was living at the San Diego Zoo.

And in the last 43 years, his prolific SEX DRIVE has basically saved his entire species.

They call him “Super Diego,” because there were only 14 giant tortoises when he got there.  And now, there are over TWO THOUSAND.

Roughly 40% are Diego’s offspring.  So he’s responsible for about 800 of them.  The researchers say lady tortoises find him extremely attractive for some reason.

He’s now over 100 years old, and he’s started having trouble mating.  But the program was so successful, they decided to end it after reaching their original goal.

The Galapagos National Park announced Diego’s retirement on Friday.  He’ll be removed from the breeding center in March and live out the rest of his life on Española Island, where he was born.

(NY Times / CNN)

(Here’s a sexy photo of him.)