Indian Star Tortoise
Popular in the exotic pet trade!
Indian Star Tortoise Scientific Classification
- Scientific Name
- Geochelone Elegans
Indian Star Tortoise Conservation Status
Indian Star Tortoise Locations
Indian Star Tortoise Facts
- Main Prey
- Grasses, Fruits, Flowers
- Distinctive Feature
- High domed, star patterned protective shell
- Dry scrub forest
- Birds, Reptiles, Humans
- Favorite Food
- Average Clutch Size
- Popular in the exotic pet trade!
Indian Star Tortoise Physical Characteristics
- Skin Type
- Top Speed
- 0.3 mph
- 30 - 80 years
- 1.3kg - 2.2kg (3lbs - 4.9lbs)
- 20cm - 30cm (8in - 12in)
Indian Star Tortoise Images
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The Indian star tortoise is a medium sized species of tortoise found in the dry and arid forests of both Indian and Sri Lanka. The Indian star tortoise is named for the star-like patterns on it’s high-domed shell which are distinctive to both species of star tortoise (the other being the critically endangered Burmese star tortoise, found in the deciduous forests of Burma).
As it’s name suggests the Indian star tortoise is found across the Indian sub-continent, more specifically, the Indian star tortoise is found in the central and Southern parts of India, in West Pakistan and in Sri Lanka. The Indian star tortoise is most commonly found in semi-arid scrub forest, along with thorny and grassland habitats, where there is plenty of vegetation both to hide in and munch on.
Due to the very distinctively marked, and highly rounded shell of the Indian star tortoise, this species of tortoise has become a popular pet in the world’s exotic pet trade. Indian star tortoises are of a medium size, with the average adult rarely growing to more than 30 cm in length. The protective shell of the Indian star tortoise also acts in the same to the shells of other tortoise species, allowing the Indian star tortoise to draw it’s vulnerable head and limbs into it’s shell for protection.
The attractive star-like patterns on the shell of the Indian star tortoise actually help the tortoise to blend into it’s surroundings more easily, as well as looking very pretty. The distinctively marked shell of the Indian star tortoise, actually breaks up the hard line of it’s shell when it is grazing, making this reptile not so obvious to passing predators.
Like many other species of tortoise around the world, the Indian star tortoise is a herbivorous animal that has a purely vegetarian diet. The Indian star tortoise browses in the dry forests of the Indian sub-continent in search of a wide variety of plant life from leaves, to fruits and berries and numerous different species of flower that are found growing in such arid environments.
Despite it’s hard and protective outer shell, the Indian star tortoise is successfully preyed upon by a number of other animals in their native habitats. Large birds of prey and other reptiles such as snakes are the most common predators of the Indian star tortoise along with humans that have both hunted the tortoise for food, as well capturing them for the exotic pet trade and moving in on their native habitats.
The Indian star tortoise begins its mating season with the coming of the monsoon, so the exact time is dependent on the area in which the individual lives. Female Indian star tortoise lay an average of 7 eggs per clutch although, this can be as many as 10. The Indian star tortoise is known to be difficult to be breed in captivity and so should only be attempted by experience breeders.
Today, the Indian star tortoise has been listed as Least concern which means that allow this species is not under immediate threat from extinction, population numbers are falling across much of the Indian star tortoise’s native range thanks to habitat loss and the introduction of other predators to their natural habitats.View all 15 animals that start with I
Indian Star Tortoise FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Are Indian Star Tortoises herbivores, carnivores, or omnivores?
Indian Star Tortoises are Herbivores, meaning they eat plants.
What Kingdom do Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the Kingdom Animalia.
What class do Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the class Reptilia.
What phylum to Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the phylum Chordata.
What family do Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the family Testudinidae.
What order do Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the order Testudines.
What type of covering do Indian Star Tortoises have?
Indian Star Tortoises are covered in Scales.
What genus do Indian Star Tortoises belong to?
Indian Star Tortoises belong to the genus Geochelone.
In what type of habitat do Indian Star Tortoises live?
Indian Star Tortoises live in dry scrub forests.
What is the main prey for Indian Star Tortoises?
Indian Star Tortoises eat grasses, fruits, and flowers.
What are some predators of Indian Star Tortoises?
Predators of Indian Star Tortoises include birds, reptiles, and humans.
What are some distinguishing features of Indian Star Tortoises?
Indian Star Tortoises have high domed, star patterned protective shells.
How many eggs do Indian Star Tortoises lay?
Indian Star Tortoises typically lay 7 eggs.
What is an interesting fact about Indian Star Tortoises?
Indian Star Tortoises are popular in the exotic pet trade!
- David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2011) Animal, The Definitive Visual Guide To The World's Wildlife
- Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals
- David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia
- Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species
- David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals
- Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals