Indian Star Tortoise

Scientific Name:

  • Geochelone elegans

Description:

  • Smallest species in geochelone
  • Famous with its star radiating pattern
  • One of the lovely tortoise kept by pet lovers, 30 years ago, it used to be one of the most popular pet tortoises in captive. But it is pretty rare now because it is eaten by local people and susceptible to pneumonia and other respiratory diseases.

Distribution:

  • India (Central and southern India), Sri Lanka and west into Pakistan

Breeding:

  • 2 to 6 eggs per clutch
  • 2 to 3 clutches per year
  • Incubation period is around 50 to 150 days

Nesting:

  • During rainy season

Size:

  • Male tortoise = about 20cm
  • Female tortoise = about 30cm

Life Span:

  • 30 to 35 years

Diet:

  • Vegetarian & Herbivorous (plant-eating); grass, succulents, vegetables, fruits and occationally meat,
  • Primary foods: Grass, Dark Leafy Greens (e.g. dandelions, mustards, collards, turnips, kales)
  • Occasional foods: Pears, Carrots, Apples (with skin), Peaches, Berries, Beans (with skin), Peas (with skin)
  • Never try to feed them: Very Juicy Fruits, Tomatos, Bananas, Cabbages, Cucumbers, Bok Choy, Broccoli, etc

Habitat:

  • Terrestrial; forests, dry savannahs, and dry grassland