Is this Radiated male or female ?

David G

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I inherited a radiated tortoise when I became part of a blended family years ago. There was a supposition that this foot-long tortoise was female, and I just kind of went along with that. On the one occasion that it was possible to see the plastron, it looked basically flat. More recently, having grown bigger and now about 12 years old, I reached down to pick it up, and noticed a marked concavity to the plastron that had not been present years ago. Do I have a male or a female ? Whichever it is, I want to breed him/her since I understand that the species is endangered, so how would I go about arranging for a hook-up ?
Thank you,
David G
 

TeamZissou

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Post some photos if you can.

For radiated, 12" is said to be the size where you can reliably sex them. You might also try soaking and running water on the tail to see if you can get him to flash.

hopefully @Sterant or @zovick can be of more help once you post some photos

Arranging a hook up isn't the best idea due to possible diseases/infections. It would be better if you got a few more, and after a period of quarantine, tried breeding.
 
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wellington

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I agree with TeamZissou. He sounds to be a Male with the concaving. Look for a couple older females, which won't be easy to find or get if you do find any. Then quarantine and let them live in a proper very big, hopefully outdoor enclosure. They aren't like dogs where you look for a stud or stud out. It might be possible to find a female with no male but oh so risky with their health.
 

Sterant

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Can you post a picture of the plastron?
 

Yvonne G

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No one with a breeding age female, who has invested so much money in the tortoise is going to approve a breeding loan without a quarantine period and vet testing.
 

nootnootbu

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I know there is a national stud book for the species due to their threatened status, so you might want to see if your guy is needed for the program or not. I don't know how to go about that, but it would probably be best to get in touch with a reputable radiated breeder.
 

zovick

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I know there is a national stud book for the species due to their threatened status, so you might want to see if your guy is needed for the program or not. I don't know how to go about that, but it would probably be best to get in touch with a reputable radiated breeder.
To determine if the OP's animal has any value to the SSP, its studbook number would need to be known. It is very doubtful that the OP would have that information for a tortoise which he inherited. However, even if that were known, see below:

Radiated Tortoises are in no danger of extinction in the US. There are probably 10,000 or more of them here now, thanks to a number of extremely conscientious private breeders. Therefore the AZA no longer allows private individuals to participate in breeding animals for the SSP (Species Survival Plan). Private peoples' animals are not needed for genetic diversity in the SSP population as they were 40-50 years ago, so the AZA has just about forbidden any of its member zoos to deal with private individuals.

Furthermore, as others have said, finding an adult female of breeding size and age will be a very costly endeavor. Such females easily sell for 5 figures IF you can pry them away from their owners. There is a slim chance that the OP might find someone with a female who is interested in breeding it with his male, but most people who own adult females more than likely have their own males as well.

It is far more affordable to buy an endoscoped young Radiated Tortoise and grow it up to maturity oneself, but that requires a lot of patience (and about 10 years of time). In my experience, buyers with that much patience are rather rare.
 
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