Dark and light green leaves

African Sulcata (Spurred) Tortoise – Centrochelys sulcata

Status: Vulnerable
African Sulcata (Spurred) Tortoise

Habitat: This tortoise can be found in the Sahara Desert and the Sahel (an area of arid savanna and shrubland) in the northern part of central Africa.

Adaptations:These tortoises dig burrows where they will aestivate (or sleep while lowering heart and breathing rate, but not hibernating) and spend time cooling off during the hottest part of the day. When threatened, they will pull their head into their shell and the spurs on their legs help to protect their head.

Diet: Sulcata tortoises require a low-protein, low-moisture diet that is high in calcium. In the wild the diet is mostly comprised of grasses. At the zoo, the tortoise is fed grass, hay or hay flakes, with small amounts of vegetables.

Fun Fact:When African sulcata tortoises are born, they are only about two inches across, but they can grow to be 24-36 inches long and weigh up to 200 pounds. They can live to be up to 150 years old.