Madagascar Flat Tailed Tortoise
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The Madagascar flat tailed tortoise is found in the dry forests along the west coast of Madagascar. Their carapace (upper shell) has a distinctive pattern, with each scute (plate) having a light brown to yellow center surrounded by a wide, dark brown to black border. The carapace can reach up 13.4 centimeters. Males weigh between 300 to 400 grams while females weigh 475 to 670 grams. The flat tailed tortoise diet consists of fallen fruits, shoots and leaves from bushes.
Due to habitat loss and the international pet trade, the Madagascar flat tailed tortoise is listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List for Endangered Species.
Be sure to check out the new exhibit, Expedition Madagascar, opening on May 7, 2010 to learn more about these cool animals!