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65 Year Old Spur Thigh


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#1 Beermat89

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 10:00 PM

Hi guys,yesterday i inherited a 65 year female spur thigh off a elderly gentleman of 92 who couldnt look after her anymore.shes a beauty and weighs a healthy 7lbs in weight.i asked the gentlemen is there anything food wise that she enjoys,he said i ocasinally feed her cat food,lettece and she loves buttercup especially in early spring,i know this goes against the rules but surely do i change this completely after all those years as it sort of proves shes lived all these years against the book?also hes said he rubs olive oil on to her shell to keep it in goid condition,do i change this or do i carry on with it as shes used to it?shes invery good condition and has no pyrimiding.what do you think of her guys?shes called may
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#2 Guest_Stella_*

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 04:45 PM

Hello Matt, she is lovely. I have three hermanns of 70+ years which were kept in the garden all the time with no lamps etc and their shells are beautifully smooth.
There has been some discussion about uv lamps pointing on the tops of tort shells and can be part of the reason why slight pyramiding can occur.
From this I deduce that if a tort is out in the sunshine (or whatever the weather) it catches uv from all directions and this helps a smooth shell. In my head it makes sense....
As for cat food and other rubbish.. My initial thoughts would be to start with a healthy diet straight a way.... But would ask the question as you have to get a more expert opinion.
Judging by what waste mine passed their diet was mostly grass!!! X x x hugs x x

#3 Beermat89

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 06:58 PM

Hi stella thanks for the reply!you have 3 torts 70 yrs +,im very jealous as they are over twice my age thats why i find them fancinating surviving all these years with owners at that time having no knoweldge how to keep them,(born survivers)lol.yes exactly shes used to being outside in all weathers with no heat/uv and thriving beautifully so defo not changing that!but for the junk food (catfood) im going to knock that on the head as i beleive it will affect her lifespan!
Matt xx

#4 Guest_Stella_*

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 07:09 PM

I have my three in the greenhouse.... Tort lodge conservatory... With lamps etc.... But they are always waiting for the great outdoors when I go to them at 6am!!!! First out, last in.,,, so hardy!! Last to hibernate too.
Like you I marvel at their life...
Xx x hugs x x

#5 Guest_Wizzasmum_*

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 10:53 AM

Hi stella thanks for the reply!you have 3 torts 70 yrs +,im very jealous as they are over twice my age thats why i find them fancinating surviving all these years with owners at that time having no knoweldge how to keep them,(born survivers)lol.yes exactly shes used to being outside in all weathers with no heat/uv and thriving beautifully so defo not changing that!but for the junk food (catfood) im going to knock that on the head as i beleive it will affect her lifespan!
Matt xx

They can lay right up to the end of their lives too. I have one estimated to be around the 100 mark, busy digging away right now ;)



#6 Beermat89

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 07:57 PM

Really so they dont hit a certain age where they stop laying then!there cant be many 100 yr old torts left around,must be very well looked after :)well the owner who i aquired her from got told by a vet a few years back thats shes a male but i know shes defo a female as of her short stubby tail and a slightly flexible underside but they never mentioned her laying eggs of corse unless she was burrying them when they werent looking lol.so do all females lay eggs with out a male present?

#7 Guest_Wizzasmum_*

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 12:07 AM

Nope, they keep on going up to the end ;)

Females don't usually lay without a male being present unless they have been with a male previously. They can carry sperm over several years. If they have never been with a male, they don't usually start, but if you have a group of females, then they often start each other off if they have been bred from before.



#8 Beermat89

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 06:03 PM

Do they,i neva knew that!well shes never seen another tort i dont think so im guessing thats the reason why shes never laid even tho i dont really want her too.thanks for the info :)

#9 Guest_Wizzasmum_*

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 08:05 PM

If she is 65 then she will be wild caught and will have seen other tortoises, but obviously not to produce eggs now LOL



#10 Beermat89

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 08:56 AM

Oh i see so back then they were taking from the wild not captive bread?good job thats all stopped!i see in another thread you have studied the testudo hermanni in their natural enviroment,where was this too if you dont mind me asking as i would love to go and see them in the wild?ive been to southern spain and france but never seen any or are the populations in these areas so small?
Regards matt

#11 Guest_Wizzasmum_*

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 10:25 AM

There were no captive bred tortoises back in those days. It was much easier to collect them already adult and ship them over to numpties in this country who thought it a good idea to see if they could survive in our English gardens :(  The smooth shells are nothing to do with how they were kept in this country, but due to the fact that they already had them after living in the wild. It wasn't hermanns that I studied in the wild, but spurthighs - these were in the Antalya region of Turkey - we have since seen many tortoises in the wild, it's just knowing how to look for them and getting well away from the tourist areas. There are good populations in Spain and France, it's just going about the right way of looking for them. You are not going to see them casually crossing the road (well not very often), but you need to get away from the human habitation areas. Best positions are at the foot of mountainous areas, on south facing gentle slopes and in scrubby land with areas of cover close by. Best angle to see them is ground level on your hands and knees. If you walk around looking down, you have likely passed many that you have not seen. Remember if you do see one, never to pick it up. Tortoises often urinate when disturbed and this urine could well have been held for months waiting for an opportunistic drink to replace it's stores. Tortoises do not urinaet like mammals do, when the bladder is full, but when they can replace supplies - otherwise they would dehydrate and die. It's sad to see how many pics there are around of tourists picking up tortoises in their native habitat :(






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