Biting tortoise

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Dot
Posts: 10
Joined: 29 Jun 2018, 11:56

Biting tortoise

Post by Dot » 11 Dec 2018, 16:59

Help!! I have two horsfield ,1 male and 1 female ( even though we were assured 5 years ago they were both female). The male is now constantly and I mean constantly either mounting the female and if she moves away then he just chases her and bites her. She has already lost a claw. I haven't got the space to get another tortoise table and am at my wits end as to what to do. I am seriously thinking of having to rehome one which I don't really want to do. Any advice would be hugely appreciated by myself and Scamp!

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Nina
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Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Biting tortoise

Post by Nina » 11 Dec 2018, 17:56

Hi Dot,

I really sympathise with you, but this is a really common problem with all species if one male and one female are kept together. Male tortoises are relentless in their pursuit of females and will stress them out by biting and by ramming their shells.

The standard advice for keeping males and females is that you need at least 2 or 3 females for every male, so that some of them can get some peace at various times. If you have a large table , could you put a divider into it to separate them? And then maybe you could give them separate outdoor enclosures in the summer. Otherwise I'm afraid you might have to consider rehoming one of them, if you aren't able to acquire more females.

For info, it's really difficult to sex tortoises before the age of 5 or 6, and young Horsfields do tend to look female.

I'm so sorry that there isn't an easy answer to your problem! Actually, I'm sat in an airport at the moment, having had several sleepless nights, so maybe my brain isn't working properly and someone else will come n with a good solution!

Nina

Dot
Posts: 10
Joined: 29 Jun 2018, 11:56

Re: Biting tortoise

Post by Dot » 11 Dec 2018, 18:56

Thank you for your advice Nina. I actually have separate outdoor enclosures for them in the summer and last winter they were in together without too much of a problem. I had wondered about trying a divider so will give that a go. We used to have a bearded dragon in a vivarium which sadly died a few months ago and I had also wondered whether one of them could go in there for an hour or two?

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Nina
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Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Biting tortoise

Post by Nina » 11 Dec 2018, 19:29

Sorry, just about to board my plane, but yes, a couple f hours in a viv won't be terrible. Sorry, have o go, so maybe Linn can come n with more advice.

Nina

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lin
Posts: 500
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:27

Re: Biting tortoise

Post by lin » 11 Dec 2018, 20:23

Hi Dot.
I know that feeling with the male/female scenario. Poor little ladies arnt they.
I can only agree with Nina's suggestion in having a slightly bigger area and deviding it to house the two seperate.
Is there a photo of the table you have them in and is there space enough to make the living area bigger?

Lin

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