Did you know?
In the rain Radiated Tortoises will raise their bodies up high and wiggle. This is known as the rain dance
Weight: up to 16kgs
Size: body length 30-40cm
Number of offspring: 3-12 eggs, up to 3 clutches per season
Gestation: 4.5-5.5 months
Maturity: based on size not age, 26cm+
Predators: Golden eagles, ravens, badgers, kit fox and coyotes
Found in low irregular rainfall areas of dry spiny forests, thorn bushes and woodlands
Diurnal and ground dwelling, typically become active in the morning, warming up in the sun and find grazing grounds, often returning to the same grazing grounds. During the hottest part of the day animals retreat into the shade to prevent overheating. When threated Radiated Tortoise will emit a loud screeching sound and pull in their soft limbs to avoid damage
The carapace or shell is high-domed, black and patterned with yellow-orange stars. Legs, feet and head are yellow with an irregular black patch found on the top of the head
Southern and South Western Madagascar
Herbivore; predominately feeding on grasses but also succulent plants and fruit
Breeding season is from February to April. Males display interest in females by head bobbing and smelling the female undertaking a relentless pursuit, mounting and noisy copulation. Males may become aggressive and combat each other during the breeding season in competition for females. 3-12 eggs are laid in a pre-excavated hole and left to fend for themselves once laid.
Lives a solitary lifestyle, although not uncommon for individuals to congregate in favorable grazing grounds
Habitat loss due to deforestation for agricultural land use and grazing for livestock and charcoal production. Illegal pet trade, hunted for food used in ceremonial events and shells used for ornaments