The Arizona Game and Fish Department is offering desert tortoises for adoption because holding facilities are at capacity.
Although it's illegal to take the tortoises from the wild, the department receives hundreds of unwanted adult and captive-born tortoises every year, said Cristina Jones, Arizona Game and Fish turtle biologist.
"Once captive, desert tortoises can never be released into the wild," Jones said. "Not only is it illegal, it can jeopardize wild populations through the introduction of disease, or displace wild tortoises."
Anyone interested in adopting one must have an enclosed yard without potential dangers like an unfenced pool or a dog. Prospective owners will also need to build a burrow so the turtles can hide from the sun.
Owners must also live in the desert tortoise's native range, which includes Phoenix, Tucson, Bullhead City, Kingman Lake Havasu and Yuma.
Desert tortoises can be interactive and provide companionship without the same demand as other household pets, according to department officials.
The department listed more information about caring for the turtle on their website as well as the adoption application.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Wednesday, June 19 2013 6:28 PM EDT2013-06-19 22:28:08 GMT
Serial killer Dale Hausner was found dead in his prison cell just after 12 p.m. Wednesday, the Arizona Department of Corrections said. Hausner, 40, died of unknown causes at the Eyman state prison inMore >
Hausner, 40, died early Wednesday afternoon of unknown causes at the Eyman state prison in Florence, the prison said.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 11:58 PM EDT2013-06-20 03:58:45 GMT
Gov. Jan Brewer
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer has vetoed a bill that would have expanded property tax exemptions for religious organizations, while also signing another bill that blocks unemployment benefits for church workers. BothMore >
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer has vetoed a bill that would have expanded property tax exemptions for religious organizations, while also signing another bill that blocks unemployment benefits for church workers.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 11:41 PM EDT2013-06-20 03:41:39 GMT
Marble Canyon Lodge
The historic Marble Canyon Lodge and Restaurant in northern Arizona has burned to the ground. Coconino County Sheriff's officials say the fire was reported about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday. Flames and smokeMore >
The Marble Canyon Lodge was built in 1926 about 125 miles north of Flagstaff near the Colorado River at Lee's Ferry.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 9:55 PM EDT2013-06-20 01:55:26 GMT
Another parent has come forward, accusing a teacher at a Valley day care center of questionable conduct. The allegation comes a day after a former teacher from a Phoenix Tutor Time told CBS-5 that twoMore >
Another parent has come forward, accusing a teacher at a Valley day care center of questionable conduct.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 3:36 PM EDT2013-06-19 19:36:55 GMT
Gun threat at Arizona Mills Mall
A gun threat forced the evacuation of Arizona Mills Mall Tuesday night. A caller told 911 that someone was pointing a gun at theater-goers while they were watching a movie. The scene is unfolding andMore >
A caller told 911 that someone pointed a gun at theater-goers while they were watching the new 'Superman' movie.More >