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Posted: September 19, 2013 8:21 a.m.

Giant pet tortoise escapes from owners in NE Ga.

CARLTON, Ga. (AP) — A low-speed chase is underway for a 50-pound pet tortoise that escaped from its owners in northeast Georgia.

Authorities say that Zip forced his way out of a backyard fence Friday night in Carlton.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports  that the animal possibly wandered off into the 1,000-acre tract of woods behind the home of his owners Susan and Kerry Fisher.

Susan Fisher fears that the tortoise, which is a native of the Sahara Desert, will not survive the Georgia winter if it is not found.

She also said that many people in Madison County eat turtles in a stew known as turtle mull, adding that it's possible someone will eat Zip.

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