(CNN)Airport authorities in the Galapagos Islands seized 185 newborn tortoises that were found wrapped in plastic in a red suitcase.
Officials discovered the tortoise hatchlings on Sunday when they X-rayed the suitcase, which was bound for the port city of Guayaquil, Ecuador, according to a statement from the Galapagos Ecological Airport.
Galapagos giant tortoises are the largest living tortoises in the world and are only native to the Galapagos Islands, according to the World Wildlife Fund, which lists the giant tortoises as vulnerable.
Ten of tortoises were found dead and the remaining reptiles were sent to the Fausto Llerena Tortoise Center to be cared for by experts, according to a statement from Ecuador's Ministry of Environment and Water.
Five more tortoises have died, possibly due to the stress of being separated from their habitat, the ministry said.
Galapagos Conservancy Director of Conservation Wacho Tapia believes that the tortoises were removed from nests on Santa Cruz Island.
"The young tortoises were found in dreadful condition and appear to be extreme