Trivia question for Aug-07-2011

Posted on Aug 7, 2011 in Trivia

Olivia and her brother had a chance to see one of these tortoises live while traveling through the Tampa FL area recently and she was fascinated by how quickly they can did a hole into the ground.  Todays trivia is all about these cool tortoises.

Gopher tortoise can be identified easily based on their appearance. A typical tortoise has a large head. Their skin color ranges from light to grayish or dark brown skin. Their long front legs are for burrowing, unlike their behind legs which are shorter. Their upper shell, called a “carapace” is yellowish brown. The gopher tortoise can have a shell up to 14.6 inches in length. On average, individuals are a bit less than one foot long. The gopher tortoise’s carapace is a solid dark-brown to grayish color. Hatchlings are more yellowish in color.

So here are Olivia’s questions:  Tell us how you can gauge this tortoises age by looking at its shell and tell us how many other species are estimated to utilize their burrow?   Also, it is said that these tortoises have various nicknames such as the “Florida Chicken” and the “Georgia Bacon”, tell us why they got these weird names as nicknames?

Good Luck 😉


Congratulations goes out to Steffi Finnerty from Hernando, Florida for being the first with the correct answers.  The tortoise we featured is the Gopher Tortoise and you can tell the age by counting the rings on it’s scute. Each plate on the shell is ridged and each ridge represents a year’s growth.

Depending on which book you read as many as 70-350 other species utilize their burrows.  And as for their odd nicknames, they earned these odd nicknames because poor people used to eat them during the depression.  Here is more on these endangered tortoise’s; Gopher Tortoise

Thanks for playing along 😉