Acquired: Wild caught / rehabilitation animal
By Ame Vanorio
Falmouth, Kentucky, United States
Posted Aug 30, 2018
Every year I get in one or two African Spurred Tortoises at my wildlife center that are wandering free along our country roads. Sadly, they have been abandoned by their owners. Rescues are overflowing with these animals and they can be very hard to place! This animal needs an owner who is experienced with reptiles and willing to make a long term commitment.
Yes, they are cute and SMALL as babies in the pet store. But they do not stay that way. The African Spurred Tortoise (Geochelone sulcata) grows to over 100 pounds and lives over 70 years. They need appropriate large secured enclosures, supplemental heat, humidity and have a large appetite.
The picture above is of Flash. Flash was with us several months while we tried to find him placement. If you look closely at the picture you can see that Flash has high ridges on his shell called pyramiding. This is caused by improper diet and lack of humidity and is the result of poor care.
Flash was a lot of fun. My volunteers enjoyed taking him for walks and he was very personable. However, he was very high maintenance. He had to be watched when he was outside because he either tried to bully his way through the fencing or dig under. He also ate a great deal.