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Travancore Tortoise

The Travancore Tortoise (Indotestudo travancorica) is the largest of the three species found in the Genus Indotestudo . Growing up to 13 inches this species is very impressive. Travancore tortoises lack a nuchal scute, the second scute along the vertebral column is located at the highest point of the shell , the Pectoral scutes are typically wider then the other two sub species.( Forsten's & Elongateds) Travancore Tortoises have an all white head with pink pigments that become more pronounced during the breeding season.

This tropical forest-dwelling tortoise is native to parts of India and are located in Karian Shola, Anaikundhy, Sichali, Kozhikamuthy, Varagaliar. They are found in a variety of habitat types composed of evergreen, moist deciduous, bamboo forests, semi evergreen forests and plantations. Within these habitats Travancore tortoises are often found near marshlands, grass clearings in the forest, and rocky outcrops close to streams. Being omnivorous, they will eat worms and different insects, greens, fungi and fruits. Major threats to the wild population of Travancore is habitat destruction by plantation crops, intrusion into forest areas by people residing in the fringe villages of forests who heavily depended on the forests for their basic livelihood requirements and hunting for food by the tribal people and others.

Travancore Tortoises are one of the rarest captive produced Tortoises in the U.S. Like most captive bred tortoises they do well with proper husbandry techniques and are a pleasure to be able to maintain. Located in India there is a few reserves that maintain them such as the Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary. It is an obligation of any U.S. Travancore Tortoise keeper, once it reaches adulthood to get them into a breeding program to help ensure future captive bred populations of this species.