Tortoise question..

Discussion in 'The Coffee House' started by TheWr0ngChild, May 29, 2009.

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  1. TheWr0ngChild

    TheWr0ngChild Well-Known Member

    Does anyone here know what looking after a tortoise entails? I know they hibernate from Autum through to spring, but what about living conditions? Do they need to be kept in a heated cage with special stuff or can they fair ok outside during the summer months?

    Also do you need a licence to keep one in the UK?
  2. Puppy

    Puppy Well-Known Member

  3. Zooty

    Zooty Active Member

    The best way to keep them is using a tortoise table. probabaly the best way to make one is a MDF 'box' thats big enough to fit a few potting trays in. That way each tray you can dedicate to a type of terrain and it stops them getting mixed its also easier to remove 1 tray to clean. Just using a lamp to heat one end of the table. there is a good article on their constuction.

    As for hibernation some species do and some dont... (do some research im not 100% on this) You also have to take into account a tortoise is likly to live longer than you are 80+ years if looked after well, im not to sure about their growth rates but a full grown sulcata can be a metre long and they are apparently good diggers so if you live in a warm climate and plan to leave it in an outside pen you will need to bury the fence a few feet deep. in the brackets is roughly their adult size.

    Hermann (20cm)
    Horsfield (25cm)
    Spur Thighed (20cm)

    Red Foot (40cm)
    Leopard (50cm)
    Sulcata (100cm)
    Star (30cm)

    In the UK, As a rule of thumb tortoises that do hibernate you need a certificate to sell so when buying one make sure you obtain one and they are hardier and easier to look after the ones that dont hibernate can be sold over the counter but are harder to look after. They are also allergic to certain plants so leaving them to roam in the garden unattended isnt the best idea and i personally would be worried about taking it away from a heat source in anything but the hottest UK days.

    Your best bet is to spend some time researching it and maybe even phoning breeders up and asking questions they want the best for their animals so will be happy to give you as much information as they can on looking after them and will also know a lot more about how to hibernate a tortoise than i do.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 29, 2009
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