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tort behaviour

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#1 Guest_mymoon_*

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Posted 23 June 2005 - 10:13 AM

hello, i'm newb over here.
i've read as much as i felt like it still i have few questions.
(before asking, my tort toby is 10yr old male. he's the only turtle i have. he walks around apartment, i feed him with fruit and vegetables.)

1- sometimes i'd go spying on him while he is alone in the kitchen. and i'd see him bitting the air. like someone was there, trying to eat OR chase someone away. ok, i've read that torts my get very "violent" while defense their territory, but.. the hell?

2- also someone mentioned bumping with their heads to each other while the other torts didn't mind it. toby bumps into chairs, tables. sometimes it seems he sees a reflection of himself and tries to go and hbump himslef :s mostly, he bumps it into things that cannot reproducea reflection image of him.

3- is it possible to learn a tort where is his/hers food/toilet/water similar stuff? if so, how do you do that? i've been out to college so i didn't pay much attention to him until lately. not becoz his "odd" behaviour rather than becoz he seems to me like a very freaky (in a good way) animal.

4- what are other "odd" things your torts do? anything you find weird or it freaks you out?

thanks in advance.

- peter

#2 Guest_Joanne666_*

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Posted 24 June 2005 - 08:22 AM

Hi Peter,

Does your tort have an outside enclosure?
Go to www.tortoises.net where you will find a full diet list, fruit and vegetables are a poor diet for a tort :-(

#3 Guest_mymoon_*

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Posted 24 June 2005 - 04:49 PM

thank joanne.
i've talked to my younger sister who was supposed to be taking care of toby, but as i found out, she kinda "stopped" doing that because she didn't feel like to. ah, teenagers.

so i took him out yesterday and it seemed he kind of enjoyed (still it was funny how he's been following me. maybe it was the smell of my shoes). i've been told that he's been out (on a grass, lots of small hills and stuff) after a year. later when he got back home, he slept in front of my shoes.

about the food, usually he gets all sorts of salate and tomatoes, some of orange and apples. he's also crazy about some kind of small sticks/cookies.. i really don't know how are they called in english. and as far as i know he doesn't eat meat.

he gets his UV by finding sunlight coming out of the window. it's not like he lives in very dark place but i am aware of importance of the sun. he doesn't live in indoor unit or anything, he just seems to walk around the whole apartment.

i've decided to take care of him from now on. we don't have a garden (we live in a block) but i'm willing to take him out daily for "a walk" for a few hours.
and as far as i know he's never met another tort of his kind.

#4 Guest_Joanne666_*

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Posted 24 June 2005 - 05:43 PM

I hate to sound harsh, but that is no life for a tortoise :-(
A tortoise will only thrive if it has, as near as possible, its natural environment, that is being outside and eating a healthy weed diet. He needs to be on soil/sand all the time, he needs to be able to bury himself in that to create his own microclimate, this is essential for their health. He cannot do that stuck in an apartment, this will lead to ill-health and a premature death.
The natural sun is absolutely vital, without it he will develop (or possibly already has) metabolic bone disease. Torts must have UVB to be able to create D3 for healthy bones, and UVB does not travel thro glass :-( Even when you need to bring a tort indoors, a high output artificial UVB light is a must, your tort is being deprived of this and its very detrimental to its health
Salad, tomatoes and fruit are not good at all for torts, they need to eat weeds and flowers, many of which grow naturally.
It doesnt sound as if he has had the best of care, and 'walking a tort round the block' is very unfair on him, he isnt a dog. He is also in danger, imagine coming across someone with a dog, most dogs look at them as new chew toys and some of the injuries inflicted on torts by dogs are horrific and often fatal.
Ive no doubt this isnt what you wanted to hear, but my only interest is the welfare of this tort.......my only recommendation is that you re-home it with someone who can provide him with the right care and accommodation, otherwise you will have a unhappy, unhealthy tort who will die way before he should.
Sorry I burst your bubble

#5 Guest_mymoon_*

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Posted 25 June 2005 - 10:51 AM

no offence taken. all i wanted was a sincere reply. and i believe i just got one.
i will not point a finger, but i just got home after ending my college and.. tort was there. those who were supposed to take care of him stopped doing that so i decided to see what can i do about it now. i had no idea about how the torts behave or anything. that's why i searched the web and sooner or later i signed in here.

what will i do about it now? i'm going to talk to my family to clear things out. it is in my interest to keep toby but under conditions that will allow him to live the way it should be. if sister decides to keep him, it will be under those same conditions. if the family is totally against "keepeing a tort" this way, i'll think of ways to find him a new home.

thanks for words, joanne. i think i'll just print out your post and show it to my sister :(

 - peter

#6 Guest_Joanne666_*

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Posted 25 June 2005 - 12:05 PM

Thank you for not taking offence at my words, as that wasnt my intention. I believe that to keep an animal you must first decide whether you can provide them with the essential 'ingredients' to maintain health and happiness. Lack of sunlight and outdoor accommodation is the most important factor when deciding to keep a tortoise. Humans love the sun, it makes us feel better, but to a tortoise it is absolutely vital and no substitute is ever good enough, even the high powered lamps should only be used when your tort cannot go outside due to the temps, but these should never be regarded as a replacement for the sun. If you go to www.tortoisetrust.org there are many articles on D3 and the importance of it and this might help you understand the workings of your tort.
There are also articles about kidney problems which arise when a tortoise doesnt have a substrate in which to dig in.
Good luck
Best wishes

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