Giant Malagasy Tortoise

Mystery turtle of Madagascar.

Variant name: Ranta (Malagasy/Austrone-sian).

Physical description: Large tortoise. Habitat: Caves.

Distribution: Southwest coast of Madagascar. Possible explanation: The Giant Malagasy tortoise (Geochelone grandidieri), an extinct turtle with a carapace 4 feet long, may have persisted until the 1940s.

Source: Raymond Decary, La faune malgache, son rôle dans les croyances et les usages indigènes (Paris: Payot, 1950), pp. 205-206.

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