Indian Star Tortoise

Indian Star Tortoise Introduction

The Indian star tortoise (Geochelone Elegans) is a threatened species of tortoise found in dry areas and scrub forest in India and Sri Lanka. This species is quite popular in the exotic pet trade, which is the main reason it is endangered.

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).

They are mostly herbivorous and feed on grasses, fallen fruit, flowers, and leaves of succulent plants, and will occasionally eat carrion. In captivity, however, they should never be fed meat. Females are considerably larger than their male counterparts. The attractive star-like patterns on the shell of the Indian star tortoise actually help the tortoise to blend into its surroundings more easily, as well as looking very pretty.

Keywords to learn

Diurnal = Of or during the day


About Me

Hey Kids, my name is Ian the Indian Star Tortoise and I am very happy to meet you. Learn more about me and my species @ www.kids.nationalgeographic.com

Key Data

  • Order:
    Testudines.
  • Lifespan:
    30 – 80 years.
  • Class:
    Reptilia.
  • Scientific Name:
    Geochelone Elegans.
  • Mass:
    1.3kg – 2.2kg (3lbs – 4.9lbs)
  • Length:
    20cm – 30cm (8in – 12in).
  • Region found:
    India and Sri Lanka.
  • Population Status:
    Vulnerable.
  • Current population trend:
    Decreasing.
  • Diet:
    herbivorous.
  • Sexual maturity:
    Male. 6-8 years, Female. 8-12 years.

The Indian star tortoise is a very beautiful and placid animal. The star shapes on its shell makes the tortoise very interesting to look at.
Now that you know more about this type of tortoise by learning the key data above, be sure also to check out the fun facts. When you are finished learning the facts, try answering the questions in the Q&A corner on the bottom right side of the page.

 

Download questions about the Indian Star Tortoise here: Indian Star Tortiose (answers are on this page)

 

Teachers. For more in depth work sheets on the Indian Star Tortoise. Click on Kidskonnect Worksheets

Indian Star Tortoise Fun Facts for Kids

  • # 1. Despite it’s hard and protective outer shell, the Indian star tortoise is successfully preyed upon by several 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.
  • # 2. Males Indian star tortoises have long tail, while females have short and stubby tails.
  • #3. The Indian star tortoise is a diurnal animal that is mostly active in the morning and late in the afternoon.
  • # 4. Indian star tortoise doesn’t hibernate during the winter, but it decreases activity during the extremely hot and cold periods of year.
  • # 5. Indian star tortoises hardly ever reproduce in the captivity (they are not recommended for inexperienced owners).

Q&A Corner

  • # 1. What is the main reason the Indian Star Tortoise is endangered?
  • # 2. What is the name of the other species of Star Tortoise?
  • # 3. What do Indian Star Tortoises eat?
  • # 4. What are the most commonly known predators of the Indian Star Tortoise?
  • # 5. When are Indian Star Tortoises active the most?

 

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