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Late sexual maturity and relative self-sufficiency
Franck Bonin and Stéphane Gagno hold a couple of Hermann's tortoises (Testudo hermanni) with, on the left, the male (smaller and with a longer tail) and, on the right, the female. The sexual maturity of the species - whose longevity reaches 60 years in the wild - happens late, around twelve years old. The female has a spermatheca that allows her to save the sperm from her previous matings for several years and thus to fertilize her eggs even if she has not been in contact with a male for a long time.
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