In southern Madagascar, endemic radiated tortoises Geochelone radiata, flat tailed tortoises, Pyxis planicauda and spider tortoises Pyxis arachnoides are openly offered for sale as holiday feast foods. The local peoples, who consider it taboo to touch or eat tortoises, are now induced by cash to sell them. They are sold from hotels, markets and gas stations. Those sold live make their way, sometimes by sea, to the Asian food markets and the Japanese pet markets. The coastal areas of southern Madagascar had recently contained viable populations of these tortoises. However, expeditions in 1999 revealed these areas now devoid of tortoises.