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Distinguishing Greek from Hermanns

Discussion in 'Greek tortoises' started by Yvonne G, Apr 4, 2016.

  1. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    I've been doing this for long enough now that I should be able to distinguish between the Graeca and Hermanni tortoises. Can anyone post side-by-side pictures of each, top and bottom, so I can compare and see why I'm having so much trouble getting the hang of it? I can post pictures, but I don't know how to get them side-by-side. And when I have to scroll up and down to look at the pictures, I can't tell the differences between them.
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  2. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Greek vs Hermann's. The easiest way to tell them apart is the plastron, the Hermann's has two longitudinal bands of black where *most* Ibera Greeks have more of a blotch (but some have no plastron markings).

    Attached Files:

  3. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    First pic is Hermann's, second is Greek.
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  4. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member

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    What? I thought the first pic had one of each. Hermann on the left and Greek on the right?
    I too can never tell, so hoping to learn here too. But now you got me confuse:mad::D
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  5. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Also Greeks have a large center head scale, Hermann's do not.
  6. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Greek

    1462404607767.jpg
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2016
  7. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Hermann's

    1462404647995.jpg
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2016
  8. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    @wellington The first pic has a Western and Eastern Hermann's tortoise.
  9. Raymo2477

    Raymo2477 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Also Greeks are more oval and domed, Eastern Hermann's are more trapezoidal and there slope is more gentle.
  10. WithLisa

    WithLisa Well-Known Member

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    The easiest way to tell them apart is the tail :p but the markings (on top and bottom) are also different.
  11. Team Gomberg

    Team Gomberg IXOYE 5 Year Member

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    I found these images while doing an internet search for photos.. I was going to make the side by side photos for ya but then these look like what you were hoping for.... Does it help?
    2r70ihc.jpg

    v7rte8.jpg
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  12. TurtleBug

    TurtleBug Member 5 Year Member

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    HermanniChris has a good post about this: http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/which-baby-tortoise-do-i-have-a-pictorial-guide.115333/

    Looking at the belly markings is probably the easiest way to tell Mediterranean tortoises apart. Scroll down to the plastron photo in the above post. These are babies, but the adults' bellies look pretty much the same. But of course, there will be variations among individual tortoises.

    Notice how Hermann's have two dark "stripes" (solid or broken depending on ssp) of dark color, Greeks have various blotches of darker color, Egyptians have one pair of dark "triangles" (chevrons), and Marginateds have several pairs of dark triangles.
  13. HermanniChris

    HermanniChris Well-Known Member TFO Sponsor 10 Year Member!

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    This should help.


    I made that video a while ago. There are exceptions to every rule of course. For instance, Greek tortoises are supposed to have thigh spurs (hence the second name Mediterranean spur thighed tortoise) and Hermann's are supposed to lack them. HOWEVER, certain locales of Testudo hermanni hermanni (the western subspecies of Hermann's tortoise) can and do have them. You can read about these spurs by following this link to my second website where I discuss the tortoises of Sicily: http://www.hermannihaven.com/#!sicilian-tortoises/chld
    Legmaker72, Kristoff, JoesMum and 2 others like this.
  14. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    I've rescued a few greek tortoises over the years, but none of them ever looked like the Greeks here on the Forum. They were gray with no shell pattern and looked like desert tortoises of a different shape.
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  15. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    A lot more similar than i thought!
  16. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    And then you get Graeca Ibera and Graeca Graeca. The one in the first post is Ibera.

    TGG has distinctive flared scutes above the rear legs and a yellowish tinge to the scales on the head
  17. Lisa Hamm

    Lisa Hamm New Member

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    I thought the same thing!!!!!
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