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Finding and maintaining pure Sri Lankan bloodlines

BlakeATX

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Oct 11, 2013
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Howdy! I wanted to start a discussion on verifying and maintaining pure Sri Lankan Stars and their bloodlines without crossing with Indian Stars. I realize there’s likely not going to be an answer that’s straight forward or 100% accurate, but I think it would be helpful info for all of those looking to acquire and/or maintain pure strains of Sri Lankan Stars and reduce crosses by mistake. Perhaps a stud book? Unless there’s one I’m not aware of. I recently acquired a pair of “pure” Sri Lankan Stars and was told by the seller that they are the offspring of the Grigus colony from Bill Zovickian and Larry Gauglar. I bought them because I loved them and not because of this info as I’m sure there’s not a way to check this. Just wanted to get thoughts or ways we can verify and maintain these kind of bloodlines so they don’t get lost over time. Here’s the ones I acquired:

49262E96-7C4B-4F40-842F-13545BF8294A.jpeg C57FA415-03DC-4438-986D-F982D7E4B6FC.jpeg 8ECC1DA4-5386-4EAA-B8E1-33400E5E9154.jpeg 0C14DF05-5EBF-433A-AF9A-E2E68023BF62.jpeg
 

G-stars

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Congratulations on acquiring that pair they are truly stunning.


This is a great topic that hasn’t been brought up in a while. If someone was looking to acquire true or pure Sri Lankan star tortoises I would ask the breeder what size the parents are. As far as I know the main differences between Sri Lankan and Indian are the adult size they grow to. My adult trio consists of 2 females and 1 male. My largest female is over 4000g, the other one is over 3200g, both are still fairly young and still growing. My adult male is over 1600g (the size of an adult Indian female) and he’s still growing. Most Indians will never reach that size. The largest Indians I know of for a female reached 2600g and for the male 1200g. Hope this helps a bit.
 
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BlakeATX

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Fantastic info! I’m curious if there’s a bit more involved in the genetic makes up even though they are classified as the same species as Indian Stars. Similar to how Western Hermann’s are all classified as the same but have very unique subspecies that are rarely pure due to mixing. I’m hoping there’s a way or maybe we can created a way to different them with 100% accuracy to keep them as a pure line. I’m curious if there’s any genetic research out there specific to Sri Lankan Stars and those differences compared to Indian. Most of all I have read is similar to what you mentioned about size difference sometimes occurring but I’m hoping there’s a bit more dealing with genetics vs waiting for an animal to grow large and then calling it Sri Lankan. Hopefully that makes sense and why I wanted to get the convo going on this. Anyone know of genetic studies?
 

kingsley

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Hello, we are awaiting information from Uve Fritz from Germany for DNA data of the Giant (30+ lb ) animal that was discovered recently. I do not have an update yet, but I shall contact Dr Anslem De Silva and come back with the latest information and findings.
 

BlakeATX

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Thank you, Kingsley! That’s very exciting. I can’t wait to learn what you find out! Is there a studbook or talk of creating one?
 

gummybearpoop

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Sep 18, 2008
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Thank you, Kingsley! That’s very exciting. I can’t wait to learn what you find out! Is there a studbook or talk of creating one?
Kingsley is probably the most reputable source of information regarding Sri Lankans. He has been working with the species for many years, has done a lot of field work with them, and has roots in Sri Lanka! Super knowledgeable!

I think a long time ago, Bill Z may have had a studbook going on, but I'm sure it's no longer active if there ever was one. Studbooks just seem to get muddy over time because some people don't participate correctly and some others aren't honest about it.

You just have to obtain specimens from reputable sources. I've kept Sri Lankan Stars on and off for the past 12 years; and have only obtained animals from reputable breeders with references. I've never purchased Sri Lankans from anyone else other than the breeder who produced them.
 

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