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Wildlife in Italy: Hermann's tortoise

Wildlife in Italy: Hermann's tortoise


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Systematic classification and distribution

Class: Reptiles
Order: Testudines
suborders: Cryptodira
Family: Testudinidae
Kind: Testudo
Species: T. hermanni

The Hermanni Tortoise (or Common Tortoise) is an indigenous species, present in Italy and in the southern part of Europe. It lives mainly in environments typical of the Mediterranean scrub.

Distinctive characters

The carapace appears light brown in color with extensive and characteristic dark brown designs. The plate is yellow with small brown triangular areas, which increase in size with age. The skin is brownish-yellowish. An adult specimen reaches 24-30 cm in length, according to the subspecies. Even the hue of the color can vary from one subspecies to a high one.
The most common subspecies are T. hermanni hermanni is T. hermanni boettgeri

Biology

The diet is mainly vegetarian, they can also ingest molluscs with their snails, which bring the necessary calcium to the armor.
Sexual maturity in turtles is not strictly linked to age, but is reached when the plate reaches a certain size.
The sexual dimorphism in adults is very marked: the male has a concave plate to facilitate the act of mating, the female has a flat plate. The tail of the male is long and thin, while in the female it is short and stocky.
The female lays her eggs in a nest dug in the ground. They hatch in about two to three months.

Hermann's tortoise (photo www.lihs.org)

T. hermanni boettgeri - T. hermanni hermanni (photo www.shelledwarriors.co.uk)

curated by Ivana Stella


Video: Hermanns Tortoise Laying Eggs (May 2022).