Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Red-Footed Tortoise Lays Eggs

Big Momma the Red-Footed Tortoise recently laid a dozen eggs at the Tortoiseland local tortoise sanctuary. Click here to see the video.


On Valentine’s Day, while local tortoise rescuer Kevin Proulx was out feeding and caring for the tortoises at his rescue sanctuary, Tortoiseland, he discovered one of the animals had dug a small ditch. Just in time for Easter and egg hunts, Proulx told the Buzz that on further investigation, he found that a Red-Footed Tortoise, named Big Mama, had dug the ditch and was in the process of laying eggs. Unfortunately, there were several broken eggs, so he stepped in to help the tortoise as she continued to lay. Proulx, who works as a video editor, also quickly started filming the tortoise laying the eggs and his rescue operation to save them. And once the tortoise was done, Proulx placed the 12 eggs in a special incubator, where they have been for the last nine weeks or so.



Proulx said Big Momma has laid 42 eggs over the past several years…but unfortunately, none of them have hatched. Proulx isn’t quite sure why, said but he’s excited to find out whether any of the new eggs will hatch in the next three weeks. According to Proulx, it takes about 12 weeks for the eggs to incubate.

And if they do hatch, it will be perfect timing for Proulx, who has recently undertaken a renovation of Tortoiseland.  That project is nearly complete, he said, and he has planned an open house for May 15 to celebrate the completion of the renovation and the launch of his nonprofit organization to support the sanctuary. Proulx is hoping the eggs will hatch in time for the celebration. We will share more details on the event as it gets closer. It will be a great time to visit and learn more his work and these amazing animals.


Big Momma is a 15 year old Red Footed tortoise whose life expectancy is between 30-50 years or more. According to Proulx, the species is forest dweller that is native to Central and South America, and are considered a critically endangered species. While Red-Footed tortoises are mostly vegetarian, Proulx said they do enjoy a dish of snails and worms on occasion.


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Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard is the publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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