Monday, March 17, 2014

The only tortoise species found in Sikkim!!

In my little knowledge there are two instance that a tortoise was ever recorded in Sikkim. on both ocassion the tortoise was reported to be Indotestudo elongata. 
* The first recorded instance was during the last week of July 2008 a little yellow tortoise was found by two labours working at the site of a Rock Garden construction, at the base of nearby Tarey Bhir (South Sikkim) on the bank of a seasonal rivulet called Khanni Khola.that was later identified by Usha Lachungpa Sr. Research Officer (WL), she identified it as a male Sal Forest Tortoise Indotestudo elongata (Blyth) of the Family Testudinidae.
* The second finding was from Chalamthang near Rhenock (East Sikkim) on June 27, 2011. The yellowish color tortoise weighed around 3.5 to 4 Kg. It was latter taken to Kitam Bird Sanctuary. It was rescued by Mani Kumar Pradhan, resident of Chalamthang. The department confirmed the species as Indotestudo elongata, an endangered species.
This cold-blooded reptile is one of the only four land tortoises found in India. It is legally protected under Schedule IV of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 as amended up to 2006.

Pic: Deepen Pradhan