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Sulcata Tortoise

C. sulcata

Family: Testudinidae
Genus: Centrochelys
Conservation Status: Vulnerable
Habitat: Sahara desert, Africa

Sulcata, or African spurred, tortoises are the third largest tortoise species in the world. They live in areas of dry, hot grasslands, savannas, and scrublands and they burrow into the ground to get to cooler and more moist soil where they spend most of their day. 

Sulcatas are herbivores and eat mostly grasses and plants that are high in fiber. They can reach up to 230 pounds and can live more than 70 years.

Many people get Sulcatas as pets, not realizing the special care and long term commitments they require. Unfortunately, because of excessive breeding for the pet trade, and removal of individuals from the wild that need to be rehomed, many rescue centers that take this species are full and unable to take in more.