Red-footed Tortoises Under Threat due to the Illegal Pet Trade, Habitat Destruction, and Hunting for Meat Consumption

Environmental News from South America:

  • Conservationists are releasing red-footed tortoises back into El Impenetrable National Park in Argentina’s Chaco province, in an effort to reintroduce the species to the region.
  • The species is so rarely seen in the Gran Chaco region of Argentina that it’s believed to be locally extinct there.
  • Red-footed tortoises are under threat due to the illegal pet trade, habitat destruction, and hunting for meat consumption.
  • The species is the latest being reintroduced by Rewilding Argentina, which has already brought back species like jaguars and marsh deer to El Impenetrable.

Red-footed tortoises are so rarely seen in the Gran Chaco region of Argentina that they’re considered to be locally extinct. But now, the species is plodding its way toward a comeback.

On May 19, conservationists working with Rewilding Argentina and partner organizations released 10 red-footed tortoises (Chelonoidis carbonarius) into El Impenetrable National Park in Chaco province, a 130,000-hectare (321,000-acre) park in northern Argentina, close to the Paraguay border. In the coming months, the team plans to release another 30 tortoises.

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Source: Mongabay

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