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Monday, March 2, 2015
Desert Conservation Program: Services
Tortoise Information 

Desert Tortoise Information

Wild desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) live in Clark County, and they are on the federal list of Threatened and Endangered Species and protected under Nevada Administrative Code (NAC 503.080).


 Desert Tortoise Fast Facts


8-15 pounds


4-6 inches


50-80 years

 Reach Adulthood:

15-20 years

 Number of Eggs per Year:

1-14 eggs

 Incubation Period for Eggs:

3-4 months

 Typical Diet:

Grasses, wildflowers, cacti 

You can find more information about desert tortoises at www.mojavemax.com, the US Fish and Wildlife Service's Desert Tortoise Recovery Page.

Tortoises in Nevada are protected under both state and federal laws.  Wild desert tortoise populations have declined due to diminished habitat and the direct loss of individual tortoises due to human activity such as poaching, collecting for pets, vehicular impact, and predator encroachment.

Unless you have a special permit, no one is allowed to own, touch, harm, harass, disturb or pick up a wild desert tortoise or disturb their burrows.  If you see a desert tortoise in the wild or in an undeveloped area, do not touch them or disturb them, but please do enjoy watching them from a safe distance. 

To find out more information on rules and regulations regarding wild desert tortoises go to our Wild Tortoise Assistance page.

Desert Tortoise as a Pet

For information on rules and regulations regarding being a custodian of a desert tortoise, go to our Pet Tortoise Information page.