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Sulcata Tortoise?


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#1 JjayApril

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 10:55 AM

Hi All,

 

Yesterday I contacted someone local in Devon as they were looking for help in finding their tortoise and I mentioned that it may have buried down (it was last Friday it went missing and it was boiling down here).

 

To my surprise the lady (who was elderly) asked if I would be interested in her other tortoise which was a Sulcata tortoise. I said I would think about it (knowing they can get very large) and I'm now puzzling it over today. I do have the outdoor space in order to do it but I've seen on the tortoise protection groups website that they're not recommended for the UK?

 

What are others thoughts on them?

 

Jonathan



#2 wizzasmum

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 01:07 PM

Sulcatas are difficult to maintain in the UK, purely because of the expense involved due to our climate. Most that have not been kept at the necessary temps are not in good health and many are suffering from MBD. They require high temps for the whole year, which means that an adult is going to require deep substrate in a barn type building which is insulated and heated, not easy in the UK sadly. A large area outdoors is brilliant but it's the indoor area over winter that is the problem. There used to be a brilliant USA website, giving full requirements and designed to put people off keeping them as a pet. Can't seem to find it now, but it showed pics of upturned sheds, dug out hedges and fences with large holes in them. I personally wouldn't entertain the idea, but if you can afford it it might be an idea for you

#3 JjayApril

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 04:12 PM

Hi Wizzasmum,

 

I already have my baby hermann and have quite a bit of outdoor space which is partially why I was entertaining the idea but maybe it's worth getting another hermann or finding a different breed?

 

When the lady mentioned she wanted to rehome it I wanted to make every effort to help her out and realistically I could probably allow it to have a chunk of my outdoor space which is around 7 metres by 5 metres with a large shed for shelter - again I'm unsure how big the tortoise is although she 'believed' it was 8 inches long. How old would the tortoise be if it was around 8 inches in length?



#4 Beermat89

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 07:10 PM

Hi
I agree yes sulcatas are hard work,lovely torts and if i had the space and money to keep them then i would but as Sue has mentioned over the winter will be a struggle!you cant mix different species of torts for a number of reasons so to play it safe id get another hermanns which you will be able to keep with yours after a at least 6month quarantine period.
Regards matt

#5 wizzasmum

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 09:30 PM

Hi Wizzasmum,
 
I already have my baby hermann and have quite a bit of outdoor space which is partially why I was entertaining the idea but maybe it's worth getting another hermann or finding a different breed?
 
When the lady mentioned she wanted to rehome it I wanted to make every effort to help her out and realistically I could probably allow it to have a chunk of my outdoor space which is around 7 metres by 5 metres with a large shed for shelter - again I'm unsure how big the tortoise is although she 'believed' it was 8 inches long. How old would the tortoise be if it was around 8 inches in length?


It's not to do with the size as it might have been grown slowly or it could have been fast grown, so could be 2 or 3 years old or it might be 6 or 7 years, no way of knowing really. One thing that is very important is never to mix species and if you have more than one species, ALWAYS wash hands thoroughly between even touching either one. People have lost whole collections by not taking these precautions. You would really need a small paddock for a sully or it would only trash the boundaries. They get very bored and dig tunnels several feet into hillsides in the wild.

#6 mildredsmam

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Posted 13 August 2015 - 05:15 AM

Hi,

I think a decision like this needs a whole lot of thought before hand, it's ok trying to help someone and rehoming this tort but I think what you have to think is long term despite it's size now, these torts do grow massive it would be like having a bull in your back garden :lol: and when it starts destroying every thing I think you would find it really hard to find it another home as people jut don't have the space they need, I think most people would struggle giving leopards enough space never mind a sully, I would give it a lot of thought first, also just to add to what Sue has said about cross contamination between two different species from what I've read you can carry infections by walking from enclosure to enclosure, so a lot to think about really, I do think it's good you've asked the question though before jumping straight in. :)



#7 JjayApril

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Posted 13 August 2015 - 12:46 PM

Hi All,

 

Thanks for all of your help and advice - I really wanted to make sure I thought everything through and got others opinions before agreeing to anything - which is why I've joined this forum!

 

I had always thought about getting a Sulcata as a juvenile and being presented with the opportunity to have a Sulcata (all be it, not a juvenile) and also helping out I was quite interested. At the moment I have quite a bit of outdoor space and there is a plan to move within the next 12-24 months to a property with 2-3 acres of land which is why I had looked at a Sulcata juvenile, having 1-2 years for it to adapt and then moving it outside with larger amounts of room post move, again, the tortoise in question isn't a juvenile so I'm unsure that right now I could sustain a Sulcata with a potential 7m x 5m outdoor space, and 2m x 2m indoor space.

 

Thanks for all of your input.






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