Friday, June 12, 2009

Conditions that threaten the survival of tortoises in the wild

Keeping a tortoise as a pet

In South Africa a license is required to keep a tortoise on a domestic property. Tortoises are classified as wildlife, and will fall under the same laws.
In my opinion considering the state and treatment of our natural open spaces and the changing weather patterns, the survival of the species my very well in the future depend on backyard tortoise breeders.


Although a tortoise is very hardy, they are very defenseless against unnatural conditions.

Situations that threaten tortoises in the wild:
  • Changing weather patterns.
  • Increasing incidences of field fires.
  • Roads bordering conservation areas.
  • Plans to develop open spaces in the future.
  • 4x4 vehicles and bikes
  • Floods

Maintenance of open spaces or conservation land like:
  • Lawn mowing
  • Artificial irrigation
  • The use of industrial lawnmowers.
  • Back burning and field fires.
  • maintenance vehicles
  • The use of insecticides, weed- and grass killers on conservation land.
  • The total ignorance or disinterest of some conservation workers and managers.
  • Absence or lack of wildlife awareness training of conservation workers and staff.


If a survey is done one may find that the training of conservation workers consists of nearly entirely on how to use machinery and implements for maintaining conservation land without considering the life of the creatures on it.

The conservation training of staff may often be the responsibility of reserve managers who may lack in their duties or knowledge and require supervision themselves.

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