Winter Enclosure

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Winter Enclosure

Post by Dandelion_burglar » 13 Jul 2017, 08:33

Hello Tortoise Table

My Hermann's torts are happily roaming the garden at the moment as I am in the UK. I currently have five (!)as my mother was no longer able to care for her three. They are around 4 years old. I am thinking ahead for the winter and worrying that their previous indoor enclosure won't be big enough anymore as they have had the run of the garden over the summer (it's a bookcase on the floor with substrate which takes up half of my lounge).

I would like to know how you keep your tortoises in the winter, e.g. do they stay outside or do you have an outdoor enclosure? I was thinking maybe a shed with some heating might be appropriate? If so, how would you make this tortoise friendly?

Many Thanks

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Re: Winter Enclosure

Post by Elaine » 13 Jul 2017, 15:42

Hi Yasmin,
With that amount of growing tortoises I think your spot on thinking ahead about the cooler months. Even in our fantastic UK summers we can get days that are to wet and cold for a tortoise

I think a shed would be a fantastic investment for their future. Think long term and get as big as it will fit into your garden comfortably. The key to any shed you chose is insulation!! Insulating it well will save a small fortune long term.

I'll add a link that we have for considering an outside build, have a read and then get back to us with any specific questions. ... WeHFYXTXYU

Elaine on behalf of The Tortoise Table (T.T.T.).

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Re: Winter Enclosure

Post by Nash » 08 Oct 2017, 13:47

See helow

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Re: Winter Enclosure

Post by Nina » 08 Oct 2017, 14:11

> Hi Nash,
> You've posted this message in two places (it's easily done), and I've just
> answered it on other thread you posted on, but here is a cut and paste of
> what I said there (it's probably best to reply on that other one, as that
> was a new thread you started) and Oh dear, I think I accidentally deleted your text when replying here -- although your photo is still here. Anyway, here is the link to the other thread:
> viewtopic.php?f=12&t=194&p=957#p957
And here is the cut and paste:
> Hi Nash,
> They are lovely little leopards, and I guess we are all noticing the
> approach of winter (my Horsfields just won't wake up in the morning -- but
> they are hibernating species and it's natural for them to wind down.
> Ahh, entertainment. I don't think there is anything really (although I know
> several people who say that a tortoise will push a golf ball around and
> sort of play with it). I think the main thing you can do to keep them awake
> and interested is to give them as big an enclosure as possible, with lots
> of interest in it (rocks to walk around and over, different textures,
> etc.). If a tortoise can see from one end of its enclosure to the other
> without obstruction, it gets bored, so break up the sight lines by putting
> objects in its way. You could even do something in a spare room -- plastic
> sheeting on the floor to stop wee going through, walls of breeze blocks or
> bricks or anything they can't push over, and a good heat and light (uvb)
> bulb in there for them to bask under. Or just an enclosure that is much
> larger than an average vivarium. When they get bigger, you will need a
> larger enclosure for them anyway, as Leopards can easily get up to 18"
> long and weigh 18kg -- and many grow much larger than that (they're the
> fourth largest species of tortoise in the world).
> Vivariums aren't really the greatest places for tortoises, as it's hard to
> get a good variation in temperature in there from one end to the other,
> which is what they need (30C at one end and 20C at the other end, measured
> at tortoise shell height). When you lifted them up this morning and they
> were cold, did you then put them under the basking lamp to warm up, and
> were they OK then?
> Straw isn't great for sleeping in as if your tortoises wee, it gets soaked
> up by the straw and then mould develops, and it also can have sharp edges
> that can cause eye injuries or irritation if eaten. Really the substrate
> you've got is perfect for them and easily cleaned. If you want something to
> make an different texture in an area, you can use ReadiGrrass. This is a
> natural dried grass (smells lovely), and can be bought at most pet shops,
> and because a Leopard's diet should be at least 70% grass, they can eat it
> too, and it's easily replaced if the tortoises wee or poo on it. It's a
> good addition to the winter diet. I wouldn't put Readi Grass (or straw)
> under the heat lamp though, as if a bulb bursts it could catch fire.
> I hope that helps. You've got lovely little Leopards, and it looks like
> you've set up a nice home for them. If you keep them warm in the daytime
> with good high light levels, they should be fine over the winter, and if
> you can add new areas of interest in their enclosure that will encourage
> them to explore a bit. Let us know how you get on.
> Nina

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Re: Winter Enclosure

Post by Nina » 08 Oct 2017, 14:12

Sorry, message written twice so have deleted.

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