Psammobates is a genus of tortoise. This genus contains three member species, all of which are indigenous to Southern Africa.[2]

Geometric Tortoise
(Psammobates geometricus)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Cryptodira
Superfamily: Testudinoidea
Family: Testudinidae
Genus: Psammobates
Fitzinger, 1835[1]

Psammobates geometricus
Psammobates oculifer
Psammobates tentorius

The genus name means "Sand-loving", and these tortoises typically inhabit the arid and semi-arid areas of southern Africa. Their specific diets and adaptations for this environment mean that these species do not generally survive outside their habitats and soon die when kept in captivity.

All three species suffer from illegal collecting and habitat destruction, but the Geometric tortoise has historically been the worst affected and is now endangered.


Distribution map of the 3 Psammobates tortoise species in southern Africa.


  1. ^ [1] Retrieved Dec. 13, 2014 from the Integrated Taxonomic Information System on-line database (ITIS) (
  2. ^ (Retrieved Feb. 24, 2010.)