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Preparing For Second Hibernation

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#1 crotchetybear


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Posted 13 December 2015 - 10:26 AM



Just wanted to check if this sounds OK - still a bit apprehensive about hibernating the youngsters and had some problems getting them to settle last year. 


Roobarb and Custard are now 2 years and two months old. As has been noted before, they are large for their age - but I've managed to keep growth to a more reasonable level this year (approx 45g each since coming out of hibernation at the end of Jan). Roobarb is 10cm and 187g, Custard is 10.2cm and 210g. At the moment they are in their enclosure in the greenhouse (under lamps and with frost protection) and have remained quite active due to the mild weather.


Last year was their first hibernation and it was suggested I give them a slightly longer wind down than recommended -  about 20 days - due to their size, which I did. I tried using a Lucky Herp fridge but had trouble stabilising the temps once the box went in and - eventually - moved them to a standard fridge (in an outbuilding, but with frost protection, where my older tortoise hibernates successfully using the box method) and the temp remained a steady 5 degrees. I plan to use the same fridge again. In total, they were in the fridge(s) for eight weeks and weight loss during hibernation was Roobarb 4g, Custard 5g.


Hoping for no complications this year, I started their wind down yesterday and am proposing three weeks, so they will go into the fridge at new year. I intend to hibernate them for at least 8 weeks, longer if everything still looks OK, up to a max of 12 weeks.


Does this sound about right?


Many thanks,






#2 wizzasmum


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Posted 13 December 2015 - 01:34 PM

Yes it sounds about right, but they still gained too much this year. I would try with a slower gain next year. New growth ie the lighter coloured growth line around scutes should be similar to a fine pencil line and hardly visible You can do longer than 8 weeks if weights are stable

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