Aldabra Giant Tortoise

Aldabra Giant Tortoise

  • For more pictures, click Aldabra Giant Tortoise Pictures

Scientific Name:

  • Geochelone gigantea
  • Synonyms: Aldabrachelys elephantina, Dipsochelys elephantina


  • Aldabra or Galapagos Tortoise are the 2 largest tortoises in the entire world.
  • They are dark gray to black in color with a highly domed thick carapace.
  • Aldabra tortoises also have a very long neck to aid in food gathering.
  • CITES listing: Class II (01/07/1975)


  • Aldabra Giant Tortoises are found mostly in aldabra atoll (a small group of coral islands in the Indian Ocean), in Seychelles Islandsome in Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion & Tanzania


  • Breeding season occurs from January to April
  • In courting, the male batters his shell against a female a dozen or more times and he makes a deep, trumpeting call when mating
  • After carrying the fertilized ova for about ten weeks, the female digs a hole in the ground and lay eggs


  • Lays between 9-25 eggs of which less than half are fertile
  • The incubation period ranges from 73 to 160 days with the young emerging during an eight-week period coinciding with the beginning of the wet season


  • Adult can grow up to approximately 48 inches (1.2 meters) in length, 550 lbs (250 kgs) for males
  • Female tortoises are approx. 36 inches (0.9 meter) in length, 350 lbs (160 kgs).

Life Span:

  • Over 80 years
  • Oldest recorded age is 255 years old tortoise


  • Herbivorous (plant-eating); Vegetables
  • Occasionally small invertebrates and carrion
  • Their main foods to be Grasses, Dark Leafy Greens (e.g. dandelions, mustards, collards, turnips, kales), occasionally foods to be Pears, Carrots, Peaches, Apples (with skin), Beans (with skin), Peas (with skin), Almonds, Tomatos, High quality canned reptile, dog or cat food, etc


  • Terrestrial; the semi-arid islands have coral limestone beaches and mangroves along their borders.

Tortoise Cage:

  • Cage should be large enough
  • Adults Aldabra are recommended to be housed outdoors in most time of the year
  • With Soil, fine sand or compressed paper granules as substrate, 12 – 14 hours each day with direct natural sunlight or UV lamp, low to mid humidity
  • Best temperature at 25 – 35°C
  • A big water dish to be left in the cage sometimes but not all the time
  • If possibllites include caves as hidding place etc