Hibernation

Post your pictures and any questions here of European tortoises e.g. Ibera Spur Thigh, Ibera Graeca, Marginated, Hermanns, Kleinmanni and we include the Horsfield tortoise. Also, do add pictures of Mediterranean tortoises you have seen in the wild.
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Hagridsmum
Posts: 3
Joined: 05 May 2018, 07:26

Hibernation

Post by Hagridsmum » 28 Dec 2018, 11:43

Hi,

I have a five year old Horsfield whom I have successfully hibernated for the past four years but this year he doesn't appear to want to slow down! I moved him to an un-heated part of the house on the 9th December. My question is shall I continue with his wind down in preparation for hibernation in a fridge or abandon his hibernation this year.

Thank you,

Catherine

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Nina
Posts: 740
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Hibernation

Post by Nina » 28 Dec 2018, 13:16

Hi Catyherine,

Horsfields are often slow to settle into hibernation (mine move around in their boxes and have their eyes open for a week or more after being put into the fridge (which is very disconcerting!). I think yours will be fine. How cold is your un-heated part of the house? For a five-year old would probably only wind him down for three weeks at the most, and for the last few days put him in a room with the door closed and the window open so that room gets as cold as possible.

It's always nerve wracking winding them down and putting them into hibernation, but I would just go ahead and put him into the fridge after he has had a sufficient wind down -- and then maybe don't look at him closely for a fortnight (just open the door for a few seconds each day for an air exchange), so that he isn't handled and doesn't see a lot of light.
Good luck and let us know how you get on.

Nina


Hagridsmum wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I have a five year old Horsfield whom I have successfully hibernated for
> the past four years but this year he doesn't appear to want to slow down! I
> moved him to an un-heated part of the house on the 9th December. My
> question is shall I continue with his wind down in preparation for
> hibernation in a fridge or abandon his hibernation this year.
>
> Thank you,
>
> Catherine

Hagridsmum
Posts: 3
Joined: 05 May 2018, 07:26

Re: Hibernation

Post by Hagridsmum » 29 Dec 2018, 15:57

Hi Nina,

Thank you for your reply. The un-heated room is around 17 degrees centigrade. I will follow your advice and continue with my plan to hibernate him. It is a worry you're right! He was winding down himself in September when I brought him in from his outdoor enclosure but I felt it was too early so I encouraged him to stay awake maybe next year I should take my cue from him! Thanks again,

Catherine

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Nina
Posts: 740
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Hibernation

Post by Nina » 30 Dec 2018, 00:16

Hi Catherine,
Your plan is good, but 17c is really warm for the end of wind down. Can you close the door of the room and open the window to try and get the temperature lower? That should slow him down. Good luck and happy hibernation.
Nina

Hagridsmum
Posts: 3
Joined: 05 May 2018, 07:26

Re: Hibernation

Post by Hagridsmum » 30 Dec 2018, 09:55

Hi Nina,

I thought that to be honest so I will leave the window open as suggested. I didn't have this problem last year as it wasn't so mild outside.

Thank you
Catherine

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