News: Indian star tortoises (Geochelone Elegans) have been seized by the Forest officials while being smuggled from Andhra Pradesh to Odisha.
- IUCN Status: Vulnerable
- CITES: Appendix I
- Wild Life Protection Act 1972: Schedule IV
Habitat: Star tortoises come from a wide distribution in India, where they live in semi-desert grasslands and moist deciduous forest. They are also found on sand dunes, in scrub forests, humid jungles and in human-altered habitats.
- Indian star tortoise has medium-sized head, hooked beak, and short, thick legs covered with tubercles of various sizes and shapes. Males have a long tail, while females have short and stubby tails. Indian star tortoise is a diurnal animal that is mostly active in the morning and late in the afternoon.
- Behaviour and Temperament: Indian star tortoises do not like being handled. They can get stressed out and get ill if handled frequently.
- Food Habits: Star tortoises are herbivores. They need plenty of fresh and dark leafy greens and grasses.
Threats: It is the single most confiscated species of freshwater tortoise in the world. It faces threats such as loss of habitat to agriculture and illegal harvesting for the pet trade.