African Spurred Tortoise

INTRODUCTION

The African spurred tortoise is the third largest species of tortoise in the world, after the Galapagos tortoise and Aldabra Giant Tortoise, and is the largest of the mainland tortoises.

These tortoises dig burrows in the ground so that during the hottest, and coolest, parts of the day they can stay at the correct temperature and humidity. All four of our African spurred tortoises were given to the park as unwanted pets after it was realised how large they grow and the specialist care they require.

We urge anyone considering acquiring a reptile to do their research and make sure they know what they are letting themselves in for.

GALLERY

FAST FACTS

Scientific Name:

Centrochelys sulcata

Status:

Vulnerable

Size:

Up to 90cm

Weight:

36-50kg

Life Span in Wild:

50 to 80 years

Habitat:

Desert fringes to dry savannahs

Diet:

Herbivore

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT ME

What Do I Eat?

Grasses and leaves

Where Do I Live?

Widespread in Northern Africa, inhabits southern edge of the Sahara desert.

Do I Have Any Predators?

Humans

How Do I Live?

Crepuscular, Terrestrial

Why Am I Endangered?

Habitat loss is one of the major reasons that numbers have declined mainly due to urbanisation and over grazing by domestic livestock. This species is also eaten by nomadic tribes and used to make longevity potions in Japan. They are also captured and kept as pets in Europe and North America.

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