Creature Feature – Aldabra Giant Tortoise
This week on Creature Feature Friday we take a look at the Aldabra Giant Tortoise.
A species of tortoise endemic to the Seychelles, this tortoise species is one of the largest in the world, similar in size to the Galapagos giant tortoise and is also one of the longest-lived animals on earth, if not the longest. No one knows exactly how long these animals are capable of living, but they are believed to easily surpass 100 years.
Scientific Name: Aldabrachelys gigantea
© Andrew Howard
Aldabra Giant Tortoise Fact File
Size: Males have an average shell length of 1.2m and weigh up to 250kg. Females are slightly smaller
Distribution: The main population of the Aldabra giant tortoise resides on the islands of the Aldabra Atoll in the Seychelles
Diet: Though it feeds primarily on vegetation, the Aldabra tortoise is flexible and opportunistic. It may supplement its diet with small invertebrates and even carrion
Behaviour: Aldabras are one of the more social tortoise species. Males will fight with one another for breeding rights and territory. Incubation period and sex of the offspring of Aldabra giant tortoises depends on the temperature that they’re kept at
IUCN Status: Vulnerable. The species is the only remaining species out of 18 former species of tortoise that once flourished on the islands of the Indian Ocean. Habitat destruction and global warming are now this species biggest threats