Carlsbad Fish & Wildlife Office
Pacific Southwest Region

Threatened and Endangered Species

Desert Tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) - Mojave Population

Within the Service's Pacific Southwest Region, the federally threatened Mojave population of the desert tortoise includes those animals living north and west of the Colorado River in the Mojave Desert of California and Nevada, and in the Sonoran (Colorado) Desert of California. Desert tortoises may live 50 or more years in the wild and they spend up to 95% of their lives underground. The Mojave population prefers to hide and dig burrows in valleys, which includes habitats containing saltbrush and desert scrub, creosote bush scrub, and tree yucca woodland.

A photo of the desert tortoise may be viewed on Flickr


The desert tortoise occurs within the jurisdictional areas of the Carlsbad Fish & Wildlife Office, Ventura Fish & Wildlife Office, and Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office (Reno). The lead field office for recovery and regulatory issues related to this species is the Southern Nevada Field Office (Las Vegas).

Information on the desert tortoise may be found at any of the above office's respective web sites.

Related Links:
Desert Tortoise Recovery Office - (2011 Revised Recovery Plan for the Mojave Population available here)
Survey Protocols & Guidelines


  Documents and information, including Federal Register notices, Recovery and Conservation Plans, and 5-Year reviews relating to the desert tortoise are available through the Service's Environmental Conservation Online System (ECOS) – DESERT TORTOISE





Carlsbad Fish & Wildlife Office Home
Pacific Southwest Region (Region 8) Home