Lancaster Park & Animal Farm

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Tortoise

Our tortoise is called Tilly, she has her own cage with a special light in the petting barn.  When the weather is fine we put her out to graze in one of the runs.

The African Spurred Tortoise, also known as the Sulcata tortoise, inhabits the southern edge of the Sahara desert, in northern Africa. It is the third largest species of tortoise in the world, after the Galapagos tortoise, and Aldabra Giant Tortoise.

The tortoise excavates burrows in the ground to get to areas with higher moisture levels spending the hottest part of the day in these burrows. This is known as aestivating.

#Adults are usually 60–90 cm long and can weigh 45 – 91 kg. They grow from hatchling size (6-9 cm) very quickly, reaching 15–25 cm within the first few years of their lives.

The lifespan of an African Spurred Tortoise is about 30–50 years, though can live much longer.

Sulcata tortoises are herbivores. Primarily, their diet consists of many types of grasses and plants. A small portion of their diet also consists of fruit. Their diet is high in fibre and very low in protein. The consumption of too much protein can cause their shells to take on a pyramid appearance.

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