This is golden brown with two dark stripes on the underneath (plastron). The males have longer and thicker tails but are much smaller than the female. The female Hermann’s tortoise can reach 10 inches in length with the males averaging only 5 inches.
These chelonians originate in Europe and can be found across the south of France through to Italy, Greece and Turkey. Much of their natural habitat has unfortunately been lost due to deforestation and urbanization of the arid grasslands and scrub hillsides where they originate.
The Hermann’s tortoise is a hardy and resilient creature but it does need a dry and sunny outdoor enclosure if possible. Although this species is more tolerant of dampness than the Russian or Horsfield tortoise it will not be happy in a damp environment. As they can grow to over 10 inches they will also require a considerable area in which to live. A small rabbit hutch will not be sufficient nor would a glass vivarium!
These species of tortoise do like to hibernate in the winter given the right circumstances and depending on their location. (If your pet is at all unwell do not let it hibernate as it could die when it hibernates. If you are unsure ask your vet).
A Hermann’s tortoise is a herbivore and will eat fleshy vegetables and some soft fruits. They have been known to eat small insects in the wild and may do so if you have an outside enclosure for yours to live in.
Breeding this species can be successful if you understand their needs. Eggs are laid in clutches of three to five and must be incubated at 91 degrees and 80 percent humidity. After 60 to 70 days the baby Hermann’s tortoises will emerge and then the hard work begins!