desert tortoise


: a large burrowing land tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) of arid regions of the southwestern U.S. and adjacent Mexico

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The monument would protect microphyll woodlands, desert tortoise habitat and an ancient Native American trade route. Sammy Rothstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 3 Nov. 2022 Joining the beleaguered list are the yucca night lizard, which lives under the branches of the tree, pinion pine, manzanita, bighorn sheep, and the desert tortoise. Jon Waterman, Outside Online, 15 June 2020 Regardless of its federal legal status, the Sonoran desert tortoise enjoys protection in Arizona state law. Brandon Loomis, The Arizona Republic, 9 Feb. 2022 The Sonoran desert tortoise population is stable and not in need of protection under the federal Endangered Species Act, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Monday. Brandon Loomis, The Arizona Republic, 9 Feb. 2022 O’Connor also recited a lengthy list of groups that support the ban, ranging from marine environmental organizations to desert tortoise protection societies, and said the supporters numbered in the thousands. Barbara Henry, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Jan. 2022 After 15 to 20 million years roaming this land, the desert tortoise is in danger of going extinct. Justin Ray, Los Angeles Times, 18 Nov. 2021 This is already happening to the Californian desert tortoise. Kat Dwyer, National Review, 5 Oct. 2021 Videos have shown Ranger Freddy eating a cactus fruit, excavating a desert tortoise habitat and safely removing a cholla cactus from his skin. Sofia Krusmark, The Arizona Republic, 3 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'desert tortoise.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1933, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of desert tortoise was in 1933

Dictionary Entries Near desert tortoise

Cite this Entry

“Desert tortoise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2022.

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