First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Use this forum to discuss general questions about any aspects of tortoise care.
Hannahmilky
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Joined: 02 Oct 2019, 14:34

Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 24 Oct 2019, 20:40

If your tortoise is completely buried at bath time do I just leave him to it and miss a day of soaking or wake him up? I’ve left it tonight. He’s been like it since about 5.30/6 and still there now

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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 24 Oct 2019, 23:15

Oh yes, I think I would leave him. He doesn't need bathing every day anyway, but I also think that the evenng isn't the best time to bath a tortoise. They naturally take themselves off to bed mid to late afternoon (and occasionally later, especially in summer), so if possible the morning or early afternoon is a better time to bath them (but of course if you're working then that can be difficult).

Nina

Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 25 Oct 2019, 06:22

Yeah I did feel like evenings were a difficult time to get when he wasn’t looking very active.
I tend to save it for evenings when the kids have gone to bed so I can give my full attention, but I’ll try to do it earlier once they’re back at school etc.

He did get me with the being lost! Even though I know it’s practically impossible for him to get out of that enclosure I still freaked that he was lost haha
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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 25 Oct 2019, 09:12

Ha, ha -- yes, I have been through the same panic -- several times. And when they are outdoors in their enclosure, I have at least one panic per day because they have obviously disappeared and been kidnapped, only to find them sat in the shade of some decorative grass, two inches from my feet -- or sometimes even in plain sight, but somehow camouflaged against the soil. I think they exist on this earth solely to test our nerves.

Nina

Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 31 Oct 2019, 11:50

Sorry I’ve only just seen this reply! I guess it’s good that they’re so camouflaged, shows they have evolved correctly!

Slightly alarmed, I just weighed him for the first time since the initial one (60g), so it’s been exactly 2 weeks, and he has gained 4g :o :shock: :?
Shortly after this he did the biggest poo I’ve ever seen (see picture for size comparison 😂)
So after his soak I weighed him again, but then he weighed in at 65g, but bearing in mind he’s got 20 minutes worth of water soaked in by that point. Maybe I should weight later on and see :s
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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 31 Oct 2019, 12:51

Hi Hannah,

When you're typing a response to a post, just below the box you are typing in is a list of 'options' (disable smilies, etc.) the fourth one is 'Notify me when a reply is posted', and if you tick that box, you'll get an email when anyone responds to your post.

I wouldn't worry at all about the 4g gain in weight. First of all, it's only a rough average, taken over a period of time. Secondly, scales can be notoriously inaccurate on small amounts of weight, so again, it could just be a gramme or two off, plus, as you say, all the water he probably took on.

Lol, yes, it is a large poo (but it's amazing what large poos a tortoise can lay. You should see the size of the eggs my little Horsfield lays -- it's a wonder that they all fit inside her.
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Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 31 Oct 2019, 14:59

Wow those eggs are amazing, it’s making me tortoise broody, I’d love to partake in egg laying and hatching in the future.

I’ll try not to worry too much about the weight then. I’ll do his SCL at the next weigh in making it a month since first measure.

And just for the heck of it, here’s an extremely cute picture (I never get bored of watching them eat 😍)
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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 31 Oct 2019, 17:24

It is fantasticto watch them dig a deep nest and actually lay the eggs. It's all done with their hind legs, so that can't see what they are doing, and the nest is about as deep as the height of the tortoise if it was standing upright on its hind legs. Doris's eggs are never incubated because she has never been with a male (only her companion Dolly), so they aren't fertilised.

You are right -- that is an incredibly cute picture! I love the way they use their front legs to grab hold of a plant so that they can pull on it with their mouths. It really is fascinating watching them isn't it?

Here's a photo of the egg actually being laid.
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Nina
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Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 31 Oct 2019, 22:24

I did not know they laid eggs as a pastime! Like a chicken then :lol: do you cook ‘em up :lol:

That picture just brings back horrid memories of giving birth haha

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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 01 Nov 2019, 09:14

Yes, I meant to add 'OUCH!' as a caption to that photo. :shock: :shock:

Nina

Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 13 Nov 2019, 12:35

Hey Nina,

Quick few questions. Ball poos quite infrequently, he did one today but the one before that was 2.5 weeks ago (I do scan the substate daily and don’t see anything that could be poo) is this okay/ normal?

The other question is about his shell growth. I’ve tried to get good photos but he had different ideas! Along the rim near his head, it seems to be like curling upwards sort of? And the shell right on the edges (mainly tail end) are very thin looking scutes, is that just because it’s new growth and hasn’t thickened up yet?
He gets calcium dusted on his food every day and had cuttlefish which he chews on most days
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Nina
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Nina » 13 Nov 2019, 13:24

As far as I know, that is completely normal. My torts have sort of transluscent edges to the scutes at the back end. And I think the slight curling up of the scutes at the front is normal too. Its good that Ball Toto is getting calcium, and I think he is going to grow up to be a very handsome tortoise indeed!

Nina

Hannahmilky
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Re: First time hermanns tortoise owner!

Post by Hannahmilky » 14 Nov 2019, 10:33

Thanks for the reply :)
Had his weigh in today and now at 71g, but I’ve decided to take it with a pinch of salt as like you said last time, it’s such a small weight to measure, so I’m not going to stress myself over excessive weight gain. It’s been a month since I got him! So I did his SCL measurement and it’s not changed at all, still 67mm

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