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Age and longevity
The age of the Hermann's tortoise (Testudo hermanni hermanni) can be assessed by the skeletal growth marks of its bones and those of the horny scales of its shell. The growth rings of the scales constitute annual marks making it possible to assess the age of an individual until its sexual maturity around 12-13 years, unlike the bony marks which extend until the 20th year. The average longevity of about 60 years of the Hermann's tortoise is explained by the adaptability of its metabolism and the protection offered by its shell beyond the first 6 or 7 years.
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