The mating ritual of Red-foot tortoises is startlingly similar in many respects to that of T. horsfieldii; the male advances upon the female, circles her repeatedly, extends his neck near her face whereupon he proceeds to move his head rapidly from side to side with a strange jerky motion. This is accompanied by occasional biting, shoving and ramming actions. Eventually he mounts from behind and during copulation emits an extraordinary sequence of ‘clucking’ or ‘cackling’ sounds. Two male tortoises will often engage in combat, and most mating activity occurs either during or just after rain. Nesting and egg laying continues all year. The Red-foot tortoises in our own collection regularly lay eggs which measure on average 45mm long by 42mm wide and which weigh some 35-50g grammes. Typically a clutch consists of between 3-5 eggs and a female may lay 2-3 clutches each season. At 30 C in a Type II incubator at moderately high humidity incubation takes on average 150-175 days. The hatchlings measure approximately 46mm long, are 42-44mm wide and weigh between 26-32g.
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