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Breeding Size or Age

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#1 Guest_vale46_1_*

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 04:05 PM

Hi all,

I wonder if anyone can tell me what are the key factors to sexual maturity in Hermans. Is it age, physical size or indeed a combination of both?



#2 Guest_heaven leigh_*

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 07:41 PM

i got told that my male tort will be sexualy mature when he is 7 but my female wont be untill she is 10

#3 Guest_jeff_*

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 09:34 PM

Hi Steve sexual maturity in any tortoise is size rather than age,then size comes with age.hermanns can grow very quick although i will not reconmend this as you will put the tortoise at risk from all kinds of health problems.ive seen five yrs old just as big as 20yrs old but there shell were very lump and its back legs were shuffleing behind with no real support, it was very sad to see.so the key factors to sexual maturity is indeed size.take care jeff

#4 Guest_vale46_1_*

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 09:03 AM

Thanks for the replies,

I thought as much, and that would explain the wide ranges of ages people quote for sexual maturity, different tortoise different growth rate.

I have seen similar examples of over feeding in tortoises as well, not quite so bad as you describe though. People used to do this with burmese pythons, it was refered to as power feeding with the idea of making the snake achieve maximum size in minimum years and as with tort's this causes all manner of problems, including infertilty.

I tend to just let nature take its course with my hermans and let them feed for themselves in the summer out in the garden. By monitoring their weight I can offer additional food if required. The other advantage of the garden apart from the exposure to sunlight is that they have to work much harder for their food by searching out on their own thus building strength and stamina.


#5 Guest_jeff_*

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 11:32 AM

Hi Steve your doing the right thing slow growth is best,the tortoise will be much more healther.and much more dence in body waite and a nice smooth carapace.take care jeff

#6 Guest_vale46_1_*

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 02:41 PM

Hi Jeff,

My collection are not too bad when it comes to carpace condition and are made up of a couple of rescues who are nearing 7 and 10 years and a couple of imports that i unknowingly at the time bought from wiltons. Yes i am yet another person duped into buying what appears to be captive bred only to find out that it is unlikely to be the case. I have only been on this forum for a few days now and find the place a wealth of info and more importantly it has really brought to my attention the plight of these imports. It is difficult to believe that the number of tortoises being imported today is so great. The down side to it is , that most people buy their tortoise before finding a forum like this. We are all aware of the situation as it stands today, the problem is how do we get the message accross to all those people who are yet to buy their first pet tortoise as i fear most of them will end up like alot of people on this forum, buying a tortoise from one of these people who have no interest in the welfare of these poor animals.


#7 Guest_Terrific Tortoise_*

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 09:50 PM

Hi Steve, If we are to imagine a tort could quite easily live beyond 100 years, then I personally would not place a female Hermanns under the age of between 15 to 20 years old, into a breeding/mating program. As for a male Hermanns, he could be younger!...T.T.

#8 Guest_Calamity Jane_*

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 10:07 PM

Yeah T.T you have a very good point, I suppose if you look at it that way, I guess they are still babies really.

Calamity Jane :*
My Tortoises :)
2.3.2 Hermanns

#9 Guest_vale46_1_*

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Posted 13 March 2006 - 07:23 PM

Thanks Guys for all the feed back on this.
I can remeber back in the 80's reading Chris Matterson's book on keeping and breeding reptiles and amphibians, that he said tortoises would normally mature around 15 to 20 years of age. Back then he was a bit of an authority on all things cold blooded. It is really interesting though to compare the advice given then with what is known now. Alot still stands today but an awful lot has changed. What sparked my interest in this was reading articles on the net where people have quoted tortoises as young as three years old laying eggs and others as old as 30 having never laid. I guess it all comes down to correct husbandry and maintenance. By the way TT love the pictures of you torts in the for sale section of the forum.


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