Indian Star Tortoise

The Indian Star Tortoise, Geochelone elegans, is a species of tortoise found in dry areas and scrub forest in India and Sri Lanka. Although raising these animals in captivity is extremely difficult, this species is quite popular in the exotic pet trade.

The Indian Star Tortoise has a convex shell with its dorsal shields often forming humps. Its head is moderate with a swollen convex forehead and covered with small irregular shields. The shell is black with yellow radiating streaks that are narrow and numerous. Plates are likewise. The shell is about 10 inches long. Females are considerably larger than the male and the plates are flatter and more concave in the female.

They are mostly herbivorous and feed on grasses, fallen fruit, flowers and leaves of succulent plants, and will occasionally eat carrion. They are very finicky and gain weight extremely slowly. Hatchlings would rather sleep than eat and most succumb in the first months of life.