Range: Central Africa
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Scientific Name: Geochelone sulcata
Habitat: arid plains and grasslands
Diet: spiny plants, grasses, carrion
Life span: unknown, longer than 100 years
Young: 15-30 eggs per clutch
Size: up to 105.5 kg (233 lbs)
These excellent diggers use their long burrows for shelter from the sun during the heat of the day and for aestivation (dormancy) during the dry season. Hatchlings grow quickly to increase their size by 18 times in their first 5 years. As adults, they are the third largest tortoise in the world (after the Galapagos and Aldabra tortoises). Human encroachment on their habitat, hunting, and the pet trade are the main threats to these tortoises.
Fun Fact: African spurred tortoises fight by ramming the shell and attempting to flip the opposing tortoise.