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Testudo hermanni varoise (France)

by touton - dicembre 19th, 2009.
Filed under: Francia del Sud, Habitat, In natura, Testudo hermanni.

6 Responses to Testudo hermanni varoise (France)

  1. Grazie Touton per le immagini delle hermanni “wild” della Francia del Sud!

    Sono foto meravigliose!

    Si tratta di esemplari selvatici di Testudo hermanni hermanni francesi fotografati in natura: con questa composizione di immagini Touton ne mette in risalto le peculiarità fenotipiche!

    Dico questo perché ho già conosciuto Touton via mail e mi è sembrato molto preparato ed interessato alle caratteristiche delle popolazioni locali di Testudo hermanni hermanni.

    Comprende l’italiano, ma non lo scrive: è disponibile a rispondere alle nostre curiosità ma lo farà in inglese o in francese! Naturalmente in cambio chiederà immagini e descrizioni delle nostre popolazioni locali italiane.

    Touton, two first questions for you;
    – the tortoise in the water was really drinking? Wonderfull habitat!
    – about the plastron on image 276: femoral and pectoral have quite the same size. It’s normal?

  2. My friend Pascal first met the tortoise in the water, I did’nt ask him wether it was drinking or not…
    But probably it was, because it was at the end of summer and countryside was quite dry !
    That water was a dying river and the only waterpoint in many square kilometers around…
    Pectoral and Femoral are not often the same size in Varoises. But female have P/F closer to 1 than males. Effectively, that specimen has Pectoral more or less the same size than Femoral. It is quite rare, but it is Nature variations !

  3. Salve Touton, (il tuo pseudo non mi é sconosciuto) le tue foto sono bellissime e mostrano bene le caratteristiche delle hermann de Var.
    In effetti mi pare piuttosto raro la caratteristica del uguaglianza del femorale e pettorale ma é certo che i criteri classici son si ritrovano sempre secondo i specimen.
    In ogni modo é una grande fortuna di potere fotografiare tartarughe selvatiche nella natura e ti ringrazio per queste belle foto !

  4. Grazie Aline

  5. Touton quali sono a tuo avviso i caratteri peculiari di questa popolazione?

  6. Lorenzo,
    This is a question that I asked myself these last few days after visiting your website and trying to compare various local italian hermanni with varoises I met on the field.
    It is not so easy to answer, even after checking on hundreds of pictures… :-(
    Finally, I think that there is not one specificity that allows to identify a varoise at first glance.
    I would say that you have to cross many parameters to conclude a specimen is, for example, either umbrian, sicilian, sardenian, corsican or varoise.
    I noticed those points:
    - all varoises have 2 large contineous dark black stripes on plastron and a majority (about 80%) have these stripes touching the gular scales,
    - most of varoises (about 90%) have regular ellipsoidal rounded shell shape. Very few (about 10%) are a little wider at the back or with back marginal scales slightly bended upwards (especially among males),
    - most of varoises (about 80%) have more than 50% of dark black on their shell,
    - most of varoises (about 80%) have F>P and quite always F is much bigger than P. Among males, F/P often close to 2 and among females, F/P often close to 1.6. F is never smaller than P (F/P=1 is a minimum),
    - most of varoises (about 90%) have a straight link between V2 and V1. The others can have this link rather rounded but never totally semi-circular as on corsican,
    - most of varoises (about 80%) have a yellow colored shell with yellow close to orange. For the others, yellow tends to sand-beige but never to greenish (as on corsican for instance),
    - most of varoises (about 70%) have no patch on gular scales. Few (about 20%) have one small dark patch on one gular, and very few (about 10%) have 2 black patches (one on each gular). Those patches (when existing) are rarely big size,
    - most of varoises (about 80%) have 5 claws on each front foot. Few (about 10%) have 5+4 and some (about 10%) have 4+4,
    - most of adult (over 15 years old) varoises have small yellow temporal patches. Young have usually big ones, but age running, the size of these patches reduces quite quickly. When over 20, these patches are very small and generally of triangle shape at the lower part of the cheeks. Very old specimens (over 30) have no more yellow patch,
    - most of adult varoises (about 70%) are all dark on the top of their head. Those which are not totally dark, usually the yougest specimens, have only a little number of small and faded yellow patches. Those patches (when existing) tend to disappear with age increasing.
    To conclude, I would say again that there is, unfortunatelly, not one single criteria completely specific of varoises.
    But, if you meet a hermanni with: 2 large contineous dark black stripes on plastron, round ellipsoidal regular shell, more than 50% of black on it, F much bigger than P, link between V2 and V1 very straight, orange-yellow colored, no patch on gular scales, 5+5 claws on front feet, totally dark head with only small yellow triangle patches at the lower part of the cheeks, then, you can tell being 99% sure (unfortunatelly, only a DNA test could confirm it totally) that this hermanni is a true varoise.
    Regarding all these criterias and their frequency among varoise populations, which of them, do you think Lorenzo, is the biggest specificity of varoises compared to italian hermanni populations ?

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