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Yearlings Always Hungry


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#1 babettebeau

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Posted 17 October 2016 - 09:38 AM

Hello

 

So far I have been giving food to the two Hermann yearlings as much as they like i.e. the equivalent 8-10 leaves of fully grown weeds scattered and hidden in different places in the enclosure, and they find and eat everything.

 

Sometime I give food in smaller quantities (half of it) because I am watching their weight, but they seems to be very hungry and if I add one leaf they run to it and devour it.

 

They are 13 months and 30gr and 32gr.

 

Factors that contribute to that might be heat and light in the enclosure and the fact that they have a large enclosure which makes them spend energy i.e. climbing, roaming around etc...

 

Apart from the two factors contributing, is this normal behavior from young ones growing to be munching large quantities like that? Shall I just carry on like this as long as there is steady slow growth on shell and in terms of weight gain.

 

Your advice will be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank you

 

Sabina

 



#2 pompeypoole

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Posted 17 October 2016 - 07:37 PM

The weight of your hatchlings is fine for their age. However I think the amount of food your are feeding is way too much. I suspect that you will soon see more weight gain. Weigh them weekly and adjust the amount accordingly.
In my experience they are programmed to eat, as in the wild they never know when they will have the opportunity again. It's down to us as owners to make sure they don't overeat. I think that it is best if they are slightly hungry as opposed to well fed. I guess this is my opinion.
On occasion feed less palettable food and if they are hungry they will eat.

#3 babettebeau

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Posted 17 October 2016 - 08:46 PM

OMG!!! thanks for that advice, I will reduce then and feed less from now.
Is it true that you should give the quantity equivalent of the surface of their shell?

#4 mildredsmam

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 02:51 AM

Hi, i agree with the above that does sound alot of food, my hatchlings would just eat and eat if i let them, i only give them a few differnt leaves a day but i do have quite a few to feed, i've never really gone by that saying the amount to cover their shell with only two hatchlings i would just feed them a good sized leaf a day, changing the weeds daily for variety and also keep a check on their weight. x



#5 babettebeau

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 06:00 AM

Thanks. They are not hatchlings. They are 13 months. so is a good size leaf for two still reasonable?

#6 mildredsmam

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 03:00 PM

Thanks. They are not hatchlings. They are 13 months. so is a good size leaf for two still reasonable?

I have some here 2 years old I still call them hatchlings force of habit lol. x



#7 wizzasmum

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 06:52 PM

Hello
 
So far I have been giving food to the two Hermann yearlings as much as they like i.e. the equivalent 8-10 leaves of fully grown weeds scattered and hidden in different places in the enclosure, and they find and eat everything.
 
Sometime I give food in smaller quantities (half of it) because I am watching their weight, but they seems to be very hungry and if I add one leaf they run to it and devour it.
 
They are 13 months and 30gr and 32gr.
 
Factors that contribute to that might be heat and light in the enclosure and the fact that they have a large enclosure which makes them spend energy i.e. climbing, roaming around etc...
 
Apart from the two factors contributing, is this normal behavior from young ones growing to be munching large quantities like that? Shall I just carry on like this as long as there is steady slow growth on shell and in terms of weight gain.
 
Your advice will be greatly appreciated.
 
Thank you
 
Sabina


It's good that new hatchlings (or yearlings) will eat as much as possible initially, but then we have to limit the amount being guided by the weight gain each month. The 'cover the shell' theory can't be relied on due to the difference in density and fibre of leaves, so best ignored. Tortoises eat dependant on temps and light. If they eat constantly, then reduce temps slightly, which also decreases activity ;)

#8 wizzasmum

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 06:54 PM

I have some here 2 years old I still call them hatchlings force of habit lol. x


I call mine hatchlings until they become juveniles lol. I call them juveniles when they are much bigger than hatchlings :)

#9 babettebeau

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Posted 19 October 2016 - 11:40 AM

Thanks very much everyone for your feedback and comments.

 

Since yesterday i started to give them much less and quantities are in line with what you said. I hide bits of the leaves in different spots in the enclosure so they don't eat all the food in one sitting when they get moving in the morning.

 

I watch them on netcams and there isn't one who finds all the food and the other gets nothing, so it looks fine to me.

 

i Will keep you posted on weight gain.

 

Sabina



#10 babettebeau

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 10:46 AM

Hello
I weighted the babies and they put on weight 4gr in a space of one month compared to my last record a month ago.
Now at about 13months (nearly 14 months) they weight 34gr and 36gr on electronic scale. These two weights are before feeding, before soaking and after urination and passing of urates on substrate.
I did reduce the food two weeks ago after your reply to my first post. Plus I have been giving them a different type of weed each day.
I think that's not too much of a disaster in terms of weight gain and they should be back on track now that they eat in line with your recommendation.
Any feedback welcome.
Thank you!
Sabina

#11 mildredsmam

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 04:13 AM

Hi Sabina,

With you just reducing their food a little i would wait till the next weigh in and see how they weigh then as youv'e only just reduced their food over a couple of weeks, let us know what they weigh when you weigh them again in a months time. x



#12 babettebeau

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Posted 26 November 2016 - 08:40 AM

Hello
This morning it was monthly weight day
One month ago:
Namaste: 34gr
Shanti: 38gr

This morning:
Namaste 37gr (+3gr versus last month)
Shanti: 40gr (+2gr versus last month)

They were born in September 2015.

It so it seems that we are back on track.
Please let me know your feedback.

Thank you
Sabina

#13 mildredsmam

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Posted 27 November 2016 - 04:55 AM

Hello
This morning it was monthly weight day
One month ago:
Namaste: 34gr
Shanti: 38gr

This morning:
Namaste 37gr (+3gr versus last month)
Shanti: 40gr (+2gr versus last month)

They were born in September 2015.

It so it seems that we are back on track.
Please let me know your feedback.

Thank you
Sabina

Hi Sabina,

Sounds like their weights have settled well. x



#14 babettebeau

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 10:05 AM

Thank you for your reply Karen.

Here are some recent pictures of both of them to show the growth..

Sabina

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