The Smithsonian’s National Zoo is celebrating a conservation milestone; for the first time, a rare Spider Tortoise has hatched in the Reptile Discovery Center. Animal care staff are closely monitoring the hatchling, which emerged May 10 in an off-exhibit area.
Spider Tortoises are listed as “Critically Endangered” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Native to the forests and sandy coastlines of Madagascar, their populations have declined by 80 percent since 1970, and populations continue to dwindle due to habitat loss and wildlife trafficking for the food and pet trade.
INCREDIBLE NEWS! And an INCREDIBLE shell! Go #SpiderTort Go!