Encouraging a more varied diet - advice please

This forum covers all aspects of tortoise diet and nutrition, including mineral and vitamin supplementation and foods appropriate for different species.
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Joined: 12 May 2018, 10:37

Encouraging a more varied diet - advice please

Post by ClareJ » 12 May 2018, 10:53

I am new to this forum and want some advice on how I can encourage Mattie (med spur thighed) to have a slightly more varied diet.
I have had her several years now and I am led to believe that she is possibly 70 years old. She currently weighs approx 3100g with shell length of 250mm. She previously had free range of a garden (so presumably grazed) but was fed - wait for it - bread and milk! Over the years I have persuaded her to move to a bit of lettuce and she will eat lots of lambs lettuce - anything else is ignored (and if birds drop bread that is hoovered up - I don't provide it). I have recently planted a 'Mattie patch' using info from your books and the tortoise mix from Chiltern seed which is just coming up (and this morning she was eating a seedling) but any suggestions for ways to encourage her to try new things please?
Thanks in advance and apologies for such a long post.

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Re: Encouraging a more varied diet - advice please

Post by lin » 12 May 2018, 11:37

Hi Clare and welcome to you and Mattie.
I am tempted to say that this will be easy. I believe deep down tortoises know what they should be eating and bread and milk does not surprise me in the least. I took on a tortoise that was fed on cooked frozen vegetables, peas, carrots and the likes...but because he had the run of the garden (except in winter) he was able to fill up on what is good for him. He is mid 90's and as smooth as a babys bottom.

We do leave an article on a change over but if he is fit and healthy I would suggest putting him in the garden on warm days with a selection of weeds from the Mattie patch if you cant pick some of the favorites and watch nim from a distence if you must. Consistency is the key because tortoises do like things the same but once a pattern and the tortoise is established it can be adjusted.
Hope this is helpful and here is the link.
https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/tor ... -new-diet/

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