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Common Name: Indian Star Tortoise
Scientific Name: Geochelone Elegans
Current Size: 1.5"
Average Adult Size: 6-10" (females larger)
Area of Origin: India and parts of Pakistan. Other variations exist on Sri Lanka.
Description: Black shell color with yellow lines radiating out of the scutes. These pretty species are a high domed tortoise, with males normally quite a bit smaller than the taller, rounder, wide females. Skin color is yellow. Some amount of pyramiding (where the centers of the scutes on the shell are raised, making the tortoises look bumpy) is seen in some wild star tortoises - likely the ones from lower humidity areas.
Habitat: Hot climates. Humidity is ok for them, but the cage and substrate should not be wet. They do not hibernate, but will go through a winter slow down period during cooler weather and shortened daylengths. As adults, they can safely handle body temperatures as low as 50 degrees at night as long as they are able to heat up into the 70's during the day. Summer highs up to 120 degrees can be tolerated as long as there is a cooler, shaded retreat the tortoise can get into. Dampness is not a problem in high temperatures (a cool mud hole on a hot day), but in cooler weather the tortoises should be kept dry.
Diet: This tortoise is naturally a grazer, and will wander about nibbling on grass the majority of its natural life. In captivity, star tortoises will graze on grasses as well as leafy weeds and clover (dandelions are a favorite). As babies, we focus more on feeding them a wide mix of leafy greens (spring mix), since they have a harder time eating the more tough grass. Vegetables can be added to the diet for variety, but fruit should generally be avoided.
Adult Behavior: Adult star tortoises are peaceful, slow moving tortoises. They are un-aggressive towards eachother in most cases, and do little damage to their environment (little or no digging or burrowing). Some individuals can be skittish if spooked, but most will eagerly come to their keepers looking for food once they are comfortable in their environments. They are not very good climbers and make little attempt to escape, so a short, basic wall will contain most of these tortoises.
Our Current Care: During cooler weather or indoors, these tortoises are kept indoors on a cypress substrate kept mostly dry with a humid hidebox that they can get into at night. Temperatures in the room fluctuate between 65 at night up to 85-90 during the day, but we keep the hidebox heated to around 80 at night with a red bulb placed overhead. With baby star tortoises, we make an effort to keep them above about 75-80 degrees at all times. As they grow larger, they can handle lower temperatures at night, etc. Diet consists of spring mix on a daily basis, with moistened Mazuri tortoise diet mixed into the spring mix a few times a week. We sprinkle the food lightly with a calcium supplement 2 or 3 times a week. The tortoises are removed from their enclosure and soaked in a separate 1/4" deep pan of warm water generally 3 days a week for 30 minutes each time. Being a desert tortoise, they should have intense lighting, and they need lights on during the day and off at night to maintain a normal day/night cycle. We use full spectrum UVB lights, which we suggest for the growth of pretty, healthy tortoises, and use spot bulbs in a small part of the enclosure to give them a "hot spot" around 100 degrees that they can get into if they want to warm up
Posted by Kevin on 9th Jul 2013
Got him yesterday the 9th July 13. He is so cute and very active. Thanks a lot Tyler looking forward to buying more tortoises from you again soon.
Posted by Vikki on 10th Jun 2012
He looks great, eats like a pig and is really curious about everything. Super happy, shipping was fast and I couldn't ask for better communication.
Posted by Harbour Harvat on 4th Apr 2011
Indian star tortoises are awesome tortoises are very easy to take care of I am telling you Indian star Red foot Herman tortoises and African spur thigh tortoises are the most cute the most easy too take care of the LIFE CHANGING! SO CUTE PLAYFUL AND WELL LIFE CHANGING! HAVE FUN! WITH YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND THAT LIVES LONGER THIN MOST OF THE PEOPLE I KNOW HAVE FUN WITH YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND THE END
Posted by Brad L on 14th Sep 2010
Totally Quality On Every Aspect Of Sales,Description,Maintenance & Delivery !! The Exact Dedication From Wonderful Couple From The Desert In Neveda,To The Surf Side In Long Island New York !!
Posted by Maryanne Ilnickij on 24th Jun 2010
Just wonderful, very active and eating up a stor already! Thank you!!
Posted by Tony on 22nd Jun 2010
I have been keeping turtles and tortoises for 31 years and these stars may be the best quality I have ever seen. Great coloration and feeding same day as delivered. I would recomend Tortoise Supply to anyone.