What species is it?? Found in Southern Africa

Kapidolo Farms

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Not solus, which is only found in southern Namibia. There are few record of this genus that far east. femoralis would seem a best bet if in that genus is right. If you face book try 'cape tortoise group' .
 

Markw84

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@K.B13 Do you still have this tortoise? @Kapidolo Farms believes Homopus femoralis is the best bet. I can't see the front feet well, so I do see the reduced very short nuchal which to me looks more Chersobius boulengeri. Until very recently Chersobius was not a separate genus and we had all these under Homopus. An easy way to tell, is that Homopus have four toes on the front feet while the Chersobius have five toes.

How many toes on the front feet? I can't tell in the pictures. Inquiring minds want to know!
 

Kapidolo Farms

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I guess you noticed I cleverly avoided genus names. o_O

@K.B13 Do you still have this tortoise? @Kapidolo Farms believes Homopus femoralis is the best bet. I can't see the front feet well, so I do see the reduced very short nuchal which to me looks more Chersobius boulengeri. Until very recently Chersobius was not a separate genus and we had all these under Homopus. An easy way to tell, is that Homopus have four toes on the front feet while the Chersobius have five toes.

How many toes on the front feet? I can't tell in the pictures. Inquiring minds want to know!
 

K.B13

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@K.B13 Do you still have this tortoise? @Kapidolo Farms believes Homopus femoralis is the best bet. I can't see the front feet well, so I do see the reduced very short nuchal which to me looks more Chersobius boulengeri. Until very recently Chersobius was not a separate genus and we had all these under Homopus. An easy way to tell, is that Homopus have four toes on the front feet while the Chersobius have five toes.

How many toes on the front feet? I can't tell in the pictures. Inquiring minds want to know!
No sorry, the images were sent by someone else who wanted to know if it was one of my leopard babies that I release there
 

Tom

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No sorry, the images were sent by someone else who wanted to know if it was one of my leopard babies that I release there
So you are starting leopard tortoise babies in captivity and releasing them into the wild? What size are they when you release them? Can we see pics of those?

I had heard that some people do this over there, but it was all second hand info and nothing I was able to verify. You are the first person I've met that is actually engaging in the practice. How common is this over there? I'd love to know more about it. Fascinating!
 

K.B13

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So you are starting leopard tortoise babies in captivity and releasing them into the wild? What size are they when you release them? Can we see pics of those?

I had heard that some people do this over there, but it was all second hand info and nothing I was able to verify. You are the first person I've met that is actually engaging in the practice. How common is this over there? I'd love to know more about it. Fascinating!
We quite a while ago when someone we know took about 12 adults from people who were keeping them on concrete slabs and barely feeding them, it was quite horrible, but we then split the tortoises between them and us and we obviously can’t release them so we got them to the point that they started laying eggs again.

The babies normally hatch in around feb, so we keep them for the first winter til about September/October and then there’s a couple farms that we release them into. We do often also have escapies who we find a a year or two later roaming around and we release them as well. I don’t know of anyone else besides me and the neighbors who do it, so I’m not sure how common it is.

We’ve actually had a small group hatch day before yesterday which was quite bizarre because the eggs had been in the ground for about 18 months, most of them had huge yolk sacs but they’re almost gone now, there’s only 6 of them, we found 7 rotten or undeveloped eggs in the hole, not sure if it has to do with the amount of time they were in the ground. 9F2E0AC2-DEDB-46C6-BBA3-9D242D848587.jpeg
These are them after getting a bath yesterday.

I’ve got photos of previous releases if you’d like to see
 

Toddrickfl1

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We quite a while ago when someone we know took about 12 adults from people who were keeping them on concrete slabs and barely feeding them, it was quite horrible, but we then split the tortoises between them and us and we obviously can’t release them so we got them to the point that they started laying eggs again.

The babies normally hatch in around feb, so we keep them for the first winter til about September/October and then there’s a couple farms that we release them into. We do often also have escapies who we find a a year or two later roaming around and we release them as well. I don’t know of anyone else besides me and the neighbors who do it, so I’m not sure how common it is.

We’ve actually had a small group hatch day before yesterday which was quite bizarre because the eggs had been in the ground for about 18 months, most of them had huge yolk sacs but they’re almost gone now, there’s only 6 of them, we found 7 rotten or undeveloped eggs in the hole, not sure if it has to do with the amount of time they were in the ground. View attachment 290638
These are them after getting a bath yesterday.

I’ve got photos of previous releases if you’d like to see
Wow, those are some amazing looking leopards!
 

Tom

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I’ve got photos of previous releases if you’d like to see
This is truly a rare treat for us over here in the US. I would love to see more photos! Please. I'd love to see what the area of their release looks like too. I don't need to know where it is, I'd just like to have an idea of the type of cover and vegetation.

How much do they weigh after over wintering with you before release?

Fascinating stuff, and thank you.
 

Gijoux

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We quite a while ago when someone we know took about 12 adults from people who were keeping them on concrete slabs and barely feeding them, it was quite horrible, but we then split the tortoises between them and us and we obviously can’t release them so we got them to the point that they started laying eggs again.

The babies normally hatch in around feb, so we keep them for the first winter til about September/October and then there’s a couple farms that we release them into. We do often also have escapies who we find a a year or two later roaming around and we release them as well. I don’t know of anyone else besides me and the neighbors who do it, so I’m not sure how common it is.

We’ve actually had a small group hatch day before yesterday which was quite bizarre because the eggs had been in the ground for about 18 months, most of them had huge yolk sacs but they’re almost gone now, there’s only 6 of them, we found 7 rotten or undeveloped eggs in the hole, not sure if it has to do with the amount of time they were in the ground. View attachment 290638
These are them after getting a bath yesterday.

I’ve got photos of previous releases if you’d like to see

It is so interesting to see the mix in the clutch.
 

William Lee Kohler

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I know it is young but the shape of the front and 2 rear vertebrals looks the wrong shape for femoralis. Wrong or right?
 

K.B13

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This is truly a rare treat for us over here in the US. I would love to see more photos! Please. I'd love to see what the area of their release looks like too. I don't need to know where it is, I'd just like to have an idea of the type of cover and vegetation.

How much do they weigh after over wintering with you before release?

Fascinating stuff, and thank you.
They're normally about 28-30grams when we release them and our smallest new babies are about 24grams and the biggest are 28grams.

The last image is of one of our releases that was seen about a year later.
6f67936f-c102-48c7-be54-66e5034663c3.JPG 86a53ad8-e51c-47e4-a913-de6fb3dfc18b.JPG
13a24f49-2e19-42f8-a9c7-c970bb4b0d67.JPG f639aefd-b3e0-45c9-884f-ba0cd81cc38c.JPG 51b92819-17b5-4fee-b537-1576143bfa98.JPG 5fc4a87e-c8f4-4425-910e-d7c07e8e1b3e.JPG 01f648da-d1ca-46c2-be76-1a5f624537df.JPG 1979253d-a7aa-4cc8-bdec-c6baec0593ff.JPG 14b8d884-8338-4e47-8546-8768cf3fb3ce.JPG e56d0e16-7d65-4dc2-95e6-744f21e5fcd9.JPG
 

Tom

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Fantastic. Thank you @K.B13 for posting these pics. I would sit there for hours and watch where they went and what they do.
 

Markw84

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I know it is young but the shape of the front and 2 rear vertebrals looks the wrong shape for femoralis. Wrong or right?

Going back to the original question of the post on the ID of that tortoise... I agree with you. The shape of the first vertebral is much more boulengeri. But also the stubby nuchal, and more importantly, femoralis are noted for having a very short seam between the 4th and last vertebral and this tortoise does not have that. So, although the location seems to more indicate femoralis, I am much more inclined by what I do see to believe it boulengeri. Counting toes on the front feet would have been a great way to tell, but too late for that.
 

Markw84

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They're normally about 28-30grams when we release them and our smallest new babies are about 24grams and the biggest are 28grams.

The last image is of one of our releases that was seen about a year later.
View attachment 291034 View attachment 291035
View attachment 291036 View attachment 291037 View attachment 291038 View attachment 291040 View attachment 291041 View attachment 291042 View attachment 291043 View attachment 291044
Thank you so much for the information. I agree with @Tom - I would love to follow them and see what they do and where they like to hide. Baby tortoise habits are simply not studied in the wild, and they can be almost impossible to find as babies.

Could we possible see pictures of the adults? And what size are the adults. From the markings it looks like a intergrade of what was called the pardalis (S African leopard) and the babcockii ("regular" leopard). You are in an area that could have both, although just a bit too far inland for the traditional S African range.

Thank you again for sharing your knowledge!
 
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William Lee Kohler

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Going back to the original question of the post on the ID of that tortoise... I agree with you. The shape of the first vertebral is much more boulengeri. But also the stubby nuchal, and more importantly, femoralis are noted for having a very short seam between the 4th and last vertebral and this tortoise does not have that. So, although the location seems to more indicate femoralis, I am much more inclined by what I do see to believe it boulengeri. Counting toes on the front feet would have been a great way to tell, but too late for that.

Thanks Mark. While willing to be proven wrong it's nice to know my powers of observation serve well sometimes. It would be great especially for rarer tortoises to have good pics of hatchlings and adults side by side and also shots of the feet as this in new info to me.
 
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bouaboua

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So, so, so much to learn in this forum.
 
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