Posted: Apr 15, 2013 6:45 AM
PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona wildlife officials say residents should leave desert tortoises in the wild.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department recently announced that last year 71 desert tortoises were turned over to their office.
Officials say every year well-meaning people turn over desert tortoises to the department but eventually captive tortoises can't be returned to the wild.
The department says captive desert tortoises pose threat to wild tortoise populations by way of upper respiratory disease.
The desert tortoise, when left undisturbed, can live to be 100 years old. They weigh about 7 to 13 pounds and lay up to 15 eggs between the months of May and July.
The tortoise is a protected species in Arizona.
Click here to submit a news tip to us!
Become a Facebook Fan!
Help those in need this holiday season
Win! Win! Win!
Wise Local Marketing!
Get news, weather and more on your smartphone and tablet!
Get texts for news, traffic, deals and more!
Sign up on KVOA.com for newsletters, exclusive deals, and more!
What's happening on News 4 @ 4
Stories and videos with Kristi's Kids
Check out the latest events FC Tucson has scheduled.
Let us help grow your business
Digital Channel 4.2
What's on KVOA and when!
Contact info for our department heads
KVOA's on air personalities!
Work at News 4 Tucson
Complete feeds of all KVOA.com stories
FCC Public File of Records, Reports, and More