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Beginner owner looking for help please


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#1 Guest_Emilypink_*

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 07:52 PM

Hi all smile.gif

I have just bought a 2 year old Hermann's Tortoise and have set up an indoor habitat consisting of: one feeding dish, one shallow water dish, artificial plants, one analogue thermometer, one digital thermometer, one Repti Glo fluorescent UVB bulb with reflector and one Exo Terra R20 Heat Glo Infra Red Lamp with reflector and some smooth pebbles.
I have read that I am only supposed to keep the UVB bulb on for a maximum of 12 hours in the winter (therefore turning it off at night to simulate evening in the tortoise's natural habitat). Do i need to turn the heat lamp off at night time too?? Would appreciate any help smile.gif wacko.gif

Emily
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#2 Guest_gail69_*

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 08:46 PM

Hi Emily

and welcome to the forum. Congratulations on your new tortoise. Aren't they just lovely. I am no expert on torts, but I think wether you keep your heat light on at night or not, during the winter, will depend on the overall temperature of the room where the enclosure is. I have a night time thermostat that will come on if temperature falls below 14 degrees.

So i would think that if your house goes very cold at night you could turn your temperature control down at night when you turn out their sunlight. I think I'm right in saying that your tortoise should be ok unless the temperature goes below about 12 - 10 degrees. If I'm wrong then I'm sure somebody else will come along and put me right.

Happy days with your new tort, and pictures would be nice when you get time.

Gail
xx

#3 Guest_Ozric_*

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 08:56 PM

Hi, I agree that generally we don't need to provide night time heating for Hermanns when we have them indoors. Although a draughty and / or cold house can mean it is necessary. If your tortoise starts to 'slow down' too much when you are keepng the tortoise awake in the winter, it can be important to have the temp at night a bit warmer. Most of us would not want our house down at 10C at night and if mine was that cold I would probably be leaving the central heating on for myself. There are often draughts at ground level which are wrth watching out for.
JOnathan

#4 Guest_wizzasmum_*

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 11:34 PM

QUOTE (Emilypink @ Dec 6 2009, 07:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi all smile.gif

I have just bought a 2 year old Hermann's Tortoise and have set up an indoor habitat consisting of: one feeding dish, one shallow water dish, artificial plants, one analogue thermometer, one digital thermometer, one Repti Glo fluorescent UVB bulb with reflector and one Exo Terra R20 Heat Glo Infra Red Lamp with reflector and some smooth pebbles.
I have read that I am only supposed to keep the UVB bulb on for a maximum of 12 hours in the winter (therefore turning it off at night to simulate evening in the tortoise's natural habitat). Do i need to turn the heat lamp off at night time too?? Would appreciate any help smile.gif wacko.gif

Emily
smile.gif


Hi Emily
You don't actually need feeding dishes as it's best to scatter the tortoises food so it has to exercise to find it. Leave whole leaves around so it has to tear at them exercising its limbs while doing so. Be careful of artificial plants as torts will eat anything given a chance. You don't need a an infra red lamp, these are confusing to tortoises so best taken out, best to use an ordinary 100 watt household spot lamp for heat. Use the lights (both of them) to simulate daylight hours. If indoors you do not need heat overnight unless your house is literally freezing. Normal house temps are fine and in fact a drop in temps overnight is beneficial, it's flipping nippy in the Med at night at either end of the season. I know I have been tort watching lol Make sure youhave substrate deep enough and fine enough for him to bed down into so he can thermoregulate and that the enclsoure is long enough to give a good heat gradient in the daytime and things should be fine.

#5 Guest_Emilypink_*

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 12:20 AM

Wow really?? ohmy.gif I am surprised at what the pet shops have advised me to buy, I do greatly appreciate and take into account each individuals' tips and expertise...thank you :-)

I have a slight worry already...I bought the tortoise today (sunday 6th 4.30pm) and as soon as I put it into it's new home, the tortoise buried itself under the bark i have and has remained there all night. Is this normal?

Emily

#6 Guest_Hettie_*

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 02:45 PM


Hi Emily,

Welcome to the forum. biggrin.gif

It is perfectly normal for your tort to bury in the substrate. smile.gif They bury to regulate their temperature. It may take a little while for torty to get used to his new home.
How old is he/she? Have you been told they need regular bathing to keep them hydrated? This is more important than how much they eat at first.

This time of year the little guy's bodyclocks are telling them it is time to sleep. I had to overwinter my tort last winter, you have to 'trick' them into thinking it is summer with heat and light. Let torty settle and if he/she stys very sleepy you can always 'up' the daylight/uv lights to 14 hours to make them a little more active. But give the little one chance to settle first.

Paula x

#7 Guest_Emilypink_*

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 09:38 PM

Thank you Paula biggrin.gif

He/she's 2 years old. I have read that I should bath the tortoise twice a week? Do you recommend bathing him/her daily then?

Thanks for you help again smile.gif




#8 Guest_Hettie_*

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 10:27 PM


Hi Emily,

I know it doesn't help but we all do different! rolleyes.gif

I would consider twice a week an absolute minimum. I bath my guys probably 5 times per week, but as they are in wind down they are bathed daily. Mine all drink from their baths everyday. They also empty their bowels in the water, this helps keep their enclosures clean so I feel bathing is very worthwhile. After their baths my guys also feed readily (not at the moment) so it might help to encourage your little newcomer to feed if bathed first!

Paula x

#9 Guest_Emilypink_*

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 09:07 PM

Hi All,

Thanks for your help everyone...RESULT...YAY!
I gave my tort a bath today and saw him/her take a small drink...Then not long after the bath he began to eat on his own accord biggrin.gif It was only a little but at least I know he tried biggrin.gif Such a weight off my shoulders!
How long do you recommend a bath should take? I bathed him for 10-15mins, is this okay?

Emily x

#10 Guest_jay_*

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 03:57 PM

Hello and welcome,
Sometimes my tort likes about ten minutes and another day he will just sit there for about twenty minutes,you will get to know ,my tort lets me know when he wants to come out when he starts moving about,sometimes i have to warm it up and also many a time had to change the water.
Jay and H




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