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Box Method Advice Please


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#1 Hellymack

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 07:34 PM

George has been down since 4th nov with no issues... Until today.

His weight has been 318g until sat 7th dec when it was 314g and then 310g on 14th dec.

He is in box which has been purpose built with insulation on topsoil with shredded paper. Box is inside our old camper inside the brick garage which has no windows.

Temps have steadily been between 3 and 9 degrees but today went up to 11. He is still asleep but am concerned that he may wake up ....

Any advice gratefully recieved as this is our 1st hibernation.

Thanks in advance

H

#2 Guest_Wizzasmum_*

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 10:16 PM

I wouldn't worry too much about the temp increase so long as he is still asleep, but the weight loss seems to be a little on the high side. Is he in contact with the paper, as this can cause dehydration due to taking moisture away from the body. If he is buried in soil, then damp it slightly to maintain hydration. If you can lower the temps in the garage by opening the door on warmer days, this might help.



#3 Freddy

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 11:10 PM

I agree with, Sue. It has also been very mild for December which can account for increased metabolism and weight loss.

Hopefully the weather acts more like winter in the next few weeks and this period of increased weight loss averages itself out.

Best of luck.

Kind Regards

Freddy 



#4 Hellymack

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 06:16 PM

Hello all

 

I hope you are all hibernating well?

 

Just wanted to update you on our 1st hibernation together. 

 

I'm not really sure what happened at the beginning of the hibernation as George's weight seemed to fall and then all of a sudden it went back up to 316g for no reason at all and I am now wondering if this was to do with the scales!

 

George went down on 4th Nov at 318g after a 24 day wind down which he seemed to take full control of, he has been down for 14 weeks and his weight is now 315g which I am really pleased with considering this is our 1st time and we are using the box method.

 

I check and weigh him every week and he always huffs at me and moves a little, his eyes are firmly closed and his eyes nose and mouth are all clear.

 

My next predicament is when to get him up, here in the midlands, like everywhere else the weather is dreadful, but temps are stable, I am thinking of leaving him down for a further 4-6 weeks providing his weight remains stable. I had intended to aim for 16 weeks but I don't want to disturb him if it is not necessary.

 

He is 6 years old now so still a juvenile and we don't know his history before we rehomed him in April 2013 other than him spending a couple of years with the RSPCA - we think his 2012/2013 hibernation ended early april 2013 but we dont know when it started.

 

I just wondered what you all think?

 

Thanks

 

Helen



#5 Freddy

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 07:14 PM

Hi Helen,

George's hibernation seems to be going very well. I think you are handling everything just fine. Personally, I would leave him for another 4 weeks or so and wake him around the middle of March all going well.

It is sufficient to weigh George every 2-3 weeks so as not to disturb him too much. You may have to provide some temporary indoor accommodation with heat and light when he wakes just in case the weather outside is poor.

Anyway Helen, Should you have any further questions please do not hesitate to ask. We are a friendly bunch here and are always ready to help.

Kind Regards

Freddy



#6 Hellymack

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 08:21 PM

Thanks Freddy you have all been great, I regularly pop in for a read up on the latest gossip in the tort world!!

 

I know I only need to check him every couple of weeks but I do miss him and it has become our saturday routine! I want to make sure everything is fine.

 

I also check the temps in his box and in the garage every day and record them - I have become a little obsessed.

 

I have already got heating, lighting etc for when he wakes up -  for the summer he has a heated shed with his own personal access to his own garden and for spring/autumn I also give him the run of our back room which has lino flooring etc for ease of cleaning plus the recommended heating and lighting will be set up as required. Teenagers are not pleased about this as they use it as their den but it only for a few weeks til summer comes.

 

I am also very careful with his diet and he has a very varied diet of weeds - in fact my husband is not at all impressed that we have to keep the clover in the lawn - george just loves it and I wont have any chemicals out there now and the lawn is far to big to de weed by hand!!

 

Cant wait for the spring now.



#7 Freddy

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 08:31 PM

Hi Helen,

It is always great and such a relief to get our little chaps safely back in Spring. :)

Take care and best of luck! ;)

Kind Regards 

Freddy :D



#8 Guest_Stella_*

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Posted 15 February 2014 - 06:30 PM

Hello Helen, now is the time where we are all feeling at a bit of a loss and need to have the patience to wait until our torts move themselves. I have spent the winter months sorting out the outdoor enclosure all ready for them emerging from their rest...... I can't wait, and they do take over. My gardener despairs at pots of weeds and corners of luscious plantain!! And definitely NO weed killer!!! Now I have had the lawn removed and boundaries made secure so the creep have even more freedom to roam!!! X x x hugs x




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