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Featured: Hatching of a Mojave Desert Tortoise
This four minute short movie depicts the hatching of a Mojave Desert Tortoise. This movie was produced by the USGS Western Ecological Research Center and USGS Western Region Office of Communications in cooperation with the Las Vegas based Desert Tortoise Conservation Center, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Nevada Department of Wildlife and the San Diego Zoo.
Height: 4-6 inches.
Length: 9-15 inches (shell length).
Weight: 8-15 lbs.
Lifespan: 50-80 years.
The desert tortoise has a high domed shell, or carapace, that is greenish to dark brown in color. Its front limbs have heavy, claw-like scales and their flat shapes are well-designed for digging.