With their star patterned shells, radiated tortoises are considered to be one of the world’s most beautiful species of tortoise!

Native to and found mostly in Southern Madagascar, they are critically endangered according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s red list of threatened species. The current population of radiated tortoises are depleting, due to habitat loss, deforestation and the illegal pet trade.

We are lucky enough to home 14 here at Chester Zoo, including two males called Bert and Football.

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Interesting facts

IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

Habitat: dry tropical forests in southern Madagascar

Size: up to 41 cm

Weight: Up to 16kg 

Threats: Habitat loss, deforestation and the illegal pet trade