difference between desert & Sulcata Tortoise?

by Paul Garcia
(Bakersfield, CA, USA)

I found a baby tortoise at a park while my kids was at practice. I brought it home and now trying to figure out what kind it is. We live in Bakersfield, Califorina. I assume that it is a desert tortoise, but it looks much like the African Sulcata Tortoise. How can I tell which it is? It is about 3in by 2in at this point. Please help?

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Sep 11, 2009
Don't release it
by: kimberly

You should first contact the club or your game and fish dept before placing it back in the desert. If it has caught something contagious, they don't want it back in the desert to infect the wild tortoises.

Sep 09, 2009
by: Anonymous

Pictures would certainly help. Baby tortoises are very hard to ID to the inexperienced. If it is a Desert (Gopherus agassizii) and it most likely is, you will need to put him back as Desert Tortoises are a protected species. Contact the California Turtle and Tortoise Club for more info. mjconnor@tortoise.org also their informative website here http://www.tortoise.org/index.html

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