Nearly 300 desert tortoises are currently in search of their human BFF.
Every year, the Arizona Game and Fish Department adopts out hundreds of captive desert tortoises that have been surrendered to the state. The folks at Game and Fish are currently caring for 288 rescued or surrendered tortoise friends who can't be released back into the wild.
The tortoise cuties are currently in a brumation period, aka they're sleeping until spring. "Much like a romantic fairytale, when the torts awake from their slumber, they'll be ready for a fresh start," Game and Fish says. That's where you come in.
Qualified Arizona residents have the chance to adopt a desert tortoise this spring, welcoming a new member to their family.
"Desert tortoises offer longtime companionship without the drama," Game and Fish's Tegan Wolf said in a press release. "Tortoises are adoring and low maintenance. They enjoy healthy greens, exploring the outdoors and visiting with their companions. Desert tortoises make a great addition to a family home with the right preparation. Our team of specialists knows each torts' unique personality and we will help you find your perfect match and prepare for their arrival."
To qualify, you must have a burrow enclosure for your future tort. Your backyard should also be safe from any hazards, like toxic plants or a pool. Before anything, though, make sure you familiarize yourself with how to properly care for a tort. (And remember: they can live for a really long time, so you should have a very long-term plan in place.) You can check out more info and guidelines here, along with the link to apply for your new best friend.
There's no fee to apply for a tortoise, but a $25 donation is suggested to help Game and Fish care for the tortoises at their facility.