Texas tortoise (Gopherus berlandieri) - Texas Turtles!

Although often considered examples of , prior to the arrival of giant tortoises also occurred in non-island locales, as well as on a number of other, more accessible islands. During the , and mostly during the last 50,000 years, tortoises of the mainland of southern Asia (), North and South America, , (), and even the island of became extinct. The giant tortoises formerly of Africa died out somewhat earlier, during the . While the timing of the disappearances of various extinct giant tortoise species seems to correlate with the arrival of humans, direct evidence for human involvement in these extinctions is usually lacking; however, such evidence has been obtained in the case of the distantly-related giant turtle in . One interesting relic is the shell of an extinct giant tortoise found in a submerged sinkhole in Florida with a wooden spear piercing it, carbon dated to 12,000 years ago. Today, only one of the species of the Indian Ocean survives in the wild, the (two more are claimed to exist in captive or re-released populations, but some genetic studies have cast doubt on the validity of these as separate species) and 10 species in the .

Up to 150 years or more for some land tortoises; about 70 years for aquatic species

Exploring the Galapagos Islands provides you with several options to see giant tortoises in the wild and also under semi-natural conditions. The big difference is that, opposite from the Seychelles, in Galapagos you can still see giant tortoises in various islands of the archipelago, and also see the efforts for the protection of these equatorial chelonians.

Zilla Land Turtle & Tortoise Fortified Daily Food | Petco

The tortoise is a land-dwelling reptile which is of the order Testudines. (They arrived 2-3 million years ago by drifting 600 miles from the South American coast on vegetation rafts or by floating and swimming. Once numbering between 100,000 and 200,000, now 20,000-25,000 tortoises live on the islands, up from a low of 3,000 in the 1970s.)

of Freshwater Turtles and Land Tortoises in India

Actually, not needing food or drink worked horribly against them when whalers, fur sealers, and buccaneers realized they could chuck live giant tortoises in the holds of their ships to kill whenever they wanted fresh meat – though the tortoises did have distinction of having the islands named after them. Galapagos means “saddle” in Spanish. The giant land tortoises come in two main groups: the smaller saddleback with a shell that curves downward in the middle, and the domed back with a shell that is domed. Our May-December couple was domed.

Giant Land Tortoise - Go Backpacking


2Department of Zoology, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL 61920-3099, USA A three-year study by the Wildlife Institute of India and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service collaborative on Conservation and Management of Freshwater Turtles and Land Tortoises in India was launched in May 1991. Major objectives of the project were (1) to determine the current status of tortoises, (2) to identify viable turtle populations and suitable habitats to establish Protected Areas, (3) to set up captive breeding units for endangered chelonians for the purpose of reintroduction, and (4) to provide scientific information and training to biologists and managers on turtle conservation and biology.During our second visit to Santa Cruz Island in the Galapagos, we had the chance to see Giant Land Tortoises in the wild on Rancho Primicias.