IMPRESSIVE TORTOISE DISCOVERED IN ARUNACHAL PRADESH
Wildlife experts have discovered the Impressive Tortoise – a new species of tortoise that are elusive and have never been sighted in India. They were found near Yazali of lower Subansari district in Arunachal Pradesh. The species is called impressive because of the orange-brown to dark brown patches on its carapace.
This little known tortoise was believed to be restricted to western Myanmar, along with its habitat in Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, and southern China, and south through the Peninsular Malaysia. The male impressed tortoise is smaller than the female which is 30 cm in length. This species is one-third the size of the Asian Forest Tortoise. The impressed tortoise measures one foot and has a “brilliant spine” – bent upwards and beautifully serrated.
This species were last found in Gwa in Myanmar- wildlife conservation society which is carrying out breeding to conserve the endangered tortoise so that it can be re-introduced into the wild.
The latest sighting further raises the status of the country as well as the state in the list of strategic turtle conservation priority areas. With this discovery, India now has 29 species of non-marine chelonians (a word denoting the turtle and tortoise family).