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Newbie - Any Advice Appreciated

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#1 Geoffrey-Hermi15


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Posted 04 January 2016 - 02:28 PM



My Partner and I decided after a year of research to get a Hermann Tortoise and picked him up on Tuesday 29th December 2015, I have attached a couple of pictures of 5 month old Geoffrey to this post.


After reading lots of books and Care Guides online for the last year I thought we were more than ready however we now feeling a little daunted by the whole thing as so many books are so contradicting each other and I think we just need a little reassurance that we are doing things right.


I'm slightly worried with the amount of time that Geoffrey is sleeping, he has been taking himself off to bed in the bedroom compartment of his tortoise table at around 4.00pm - 5.00pm however just doesn't wake up on his own accord.


I went home to visit Geoffrey on my Lunch Break today at 12.30pm and he was still asleep after going to sleep at 5.00pm yesterday. Is this normal?


I am worried that he wont be getting enough light so I gently woke him and put him under the light is this the right thing to do?


I will list some of the things we are doing below and if any of them are wrong / need changing any help would be appreciated.



Kurly Kale

Carrot Tops

Water Cress



I give this to Geoffrey in the morning around 7.00am before leaving for work, I make up a small fresh, fine salad for him and place in his food bowl, Food bowl is sanitized daily and I also add a small amount of Calci Dust to his food. I also leave a few small pieces of food around his tortoise table in different places to encourage Geoffrey to explore and find his food. - Is this ok to do?


Fresh Mineral Water is given daily to Geoffrey, again bowl sanitized at each water change.


Light & Heat:

Above the tortoise table we have a D3 Basking Lamp 100W UVA, UVB.


The thermometer under the light is around 30-31 degrees and in the bedroom area it is around 17-18degrees


I put the light on at 7.00am and turn off at 7.00pm


As Geoffrey doesn't seem to be waking by himself should I wake him up at 7.00am and put him under the light or should I leave him to wake naturally? i don't want to stress him out by waking him however i am worried he wont get enough light during the day?


Bath Time:

Since getting Geoffrey I have bathed him for 10 minutes each day in Luke warm water which he seems to love, he usually always urinates in his bath and seems much brighter in himself and more energised once he's has this.


Again I am not worried that anything is necessarily wrong with Geoffrey however I think I just need more reassurance that we are doing it right and if we need to change anything.


Any help or advice would be much appreciated.


Thank you :)







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#2 wizzasmum


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Posted 04 January 2016 - 02:49 PM

Hi, it's always daunting when looking at info on the net, but anyone can write a book about pets and gave it published so stick to those written by breeders and trusted organisations such as Tortoise Trust or similar. Pet shop books and those found in reptile centres are rarely accurate. Tortoises do need time to settle but you may need to increase heat and light to encourage him out. It needs to be thirty two degrees. Bedrooms are a bad idea as they keep light and heat to a minimum when lamps go on, so if possible remove this area or block it off. Try to remember he is a tortoise and as such needs to do the things tortoises do, so no sterilised soil dishes etc, as he needs to build up good immunity to disease. Don't feed carrot tops as these are not a good diet. Give mixed weeds where possible as recommended here www.tortoises.net Dont give food from a bowl, spread it around so he has to find it, as in nature. Don't sanitise water dishes and use either rain water or tap water, mineral water is not required. I do think you need to increase heat and light though, to encourage natural activity.

#3 Geoffrey-Hermi15


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Posted 04 January 2016 - 08:03 PM

Thanks for your help.

We will remove the sleeping area and see how he gets on.

I have also lowered the light so that the thermometer is reading 32 degrees.

The breeder that we got him from suggested the mineral water due to it being more natural and having gone through rocks etc in the wild? I was a bit unsure if this was necessary.

We have also ordered a seed kit for wild weeds / plants etc so his diet will be improved as soon as we have this.

Thanks again!

#4 gizmosmum


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Posted 05 January 2016 - 08:12 AM

Sounds like you are on track, presume he's on soil as substrate, this is good source of diet info. Enjoy him!!

#5 mildredsmam


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Posted 05 January 2016 - 03:42 PM

Hi Charlotte, welcome to the forum. :)

For Geoffrey's diet you might find this book really helpful  http://www.tlady.clara.net/id16.htm and this is a great place to buy seeds to grow your own tortoise food  http://www.tlady.cla...t/herbiseed.htm  :)

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