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Advice Needed For Major Newbie!

New Advice Help Hermann

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#1 GeoHiccup

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 07:28 PM

Hi all, my very first post here and Ive got many questions :D

I haven't got a tortoise yet but have been doing extensive research into them and have decided on a hermann.
I'd like to list all the items I will eventually get, it may be as long as next summer until I actually get everything together including the hermann, however I like to prepare well in advance :)

 

I've done research and decided on a tortoise table due to eharing of respiratory problems caused by viv's as well as the natural basking instinct being messed with by the overall warm insulted viv.

 

1: Tortoise table, 4 feet by 2 feet and 8 inches tall http://www.thetortoi...use-no-contents

2: Combined Mega Ray 100w, I thought this would be useful so he/she will ahve a basking spot and his/her UVB needs will be taken care of, do you recommend this? http://www.megaray.c...sted-p-145.html

3: Food and water bowl
4: I have heard, and want to do more research into, the fact that they like to burrow/dig a bit? Would Arcadia Earth Mix be alright? I get it for my Crested Gecko as she likes to burrow sometimes for eggs http://www.reptilece...tm#.WMROxKJBrIU
5: Plants, I've looked into the number of safe plants for tortoises and have heard some things about fake plants being a hazard if your tortoise decides to take a nibble. Luckily I have plenty of garden centres around me so that won't be a problem
6: The tortoise him/herself :D

 

I do hope that is everything I will need lsited above but please if I have forgotten anything please let me know! :) I want to be fully prepared and start to save. I am looking into building my own tortoise table, however, as it may be cheaper and maybe even a little bigger, however I know I need to check the wood I use isn't pine or cedar as it is toxic to them :)

 

Thanks for reading, super excited :D

Georgia :)



#2 wizzasmum

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 09:38 PM

That's pretty impressive research Georgia. You are right that you will get more for your money by not getting a ready made tortoise table. You don't need hide areas in a tortoise table, these are a waste of space. It's much better for a tortoise to dig down into the substrate which helps with good shell growth, as well as maintains humidity. If you are not going to move the habitat too much, soil is the best option, but coir is lighter to carry. You don't need a food bowl as tortoises using them tend to get lazy and will overeat. It's better for them if you spread the food around so they have to work for it. Leave leaves whole, again so they have to work and use muscles and don't buy prepared foods. It's not easy to grow plants in tortoise tables as he will dig it up and prevent growth, you are right though that fake plants can be dangerous. I'm not sure about the Arcadia mix, but those tortoise substrates with bits of calcium in them can be dangerous if eaten. Megarays are good lamps. In a four foot table, site the lamp in the centre of the habitat and you will get a good gradient of heat and light. This is how I keep baby hermanns www.tortsmad/hatchlings.htm Hope this helps.

#3 mildredsmam

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 05:19 AM

Hi all, my very first post here and Ive got many questions :D

I haven't got a tortoise yet but have been doing extensive research into them and have decided on a hermann.
I'd like to list all the items I will eventually get, it may be as long as next summer until I actually get everything together including the hermann, however I like to prepare well in advance :)

 

I've done research and decided on a tortoise table due to eharing of respiratory problems caused by viv's as well as the natural basking instinct being messed with by the overall warm insulted viv.

 

1: Tortoise table, 4 feet by 2 feet and 8 inches tall http://www.thetortoi...use-no-contents

2: Combined Mega Ray 100w, I thought this would be useful so he/she will ahve a basking spot and his/her UVB needs will be taken care of, do you recommend this? http://www.megaray.c...sted-p-145.html

3: Food and water bowl
4: I have heard, and want to do more research into, the fact that they like to burrow/dig a bit? Would Arcadia Earth Mix be alright? I get it for my Crested Gecko as she likes to burrow sometimes for eggs http://www.reptilece...tm#.WMROxKJBrIU
5: Plants, I've looked into the number of safe plants for tortoises and have heard some things about fake plants being a hazard if your tortoise decides to take a nibble. Luckily I have plenty of garden centres around me so that won't be a problem
6: The tortoise him/herself :D

 

I do hope that is everything I will need lsited above but please if I have forgotten anything please let me know! :) I want to be fully prepared and start to save. I am looking into building my own tortoise table, however, as it may be cheaper and maybe even a little bigger, however I know I need to check the wood I use isn't pine or cedar as it is toxic to them :)

 

Thanks for reading, super excited :D

Georgia :)

Hi Georgia, welcome to the forum. :) 

It sounds like you have every thing sorted and thought through, I agree with Sue and would use soil as a substrate but other than that your sound like you know where your going, for plants in tables I use Carex grass plants these work really well it's the only thing I've found lasts long enough, when you are ready to get your tortoise I would look for a breeder close to you instead of buying from a pet shop. :) 



#4 babettebeau

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 07:20 PM

That's great that you have started the preparation process because it takes longer than we think! I am a rather newbie, and I am happy to share with you additional info i came across when i started:

If you use wood for your table, you might want to line it with a pond liner. This is because it will prevent mold development on the wood when the substrate is moist.

You need the dome for the Megaray bulb. Possibly the stand unless you build your own stand. I think on the Megaray website if you buy both bulb + dome together it is a bit cheaper. The temp under the lamp is adjusted by putting the bulb lower or higher on the stand.

To add some texture in the enclosure you might want to get some drift wood pieces, and perhaps a bigger piece like a log. They can walk over and climb them. Drift wood is light too. That will make them work their legs and be stimulating.

Also some wooden flexible bridges (they sell them for small pets like Guinea pigs, rabbits, hamsters and in different sizes. You can use them as something to climb on or a a visual barrier for example. Again more stimulating because they cannot see the end of the enclosure and makes it more exploratory.

A piece of flat stone will be good too, for example i got free samples of limestone untreated pavement for garden on the internet and that did the job. The purpose of it is when they eat on it they keep their beak trimmed.

If you are away during the day you might want a timer for the lamp.

Also a laser thermometer to check the temp under the lamp and away from the lamp.

Hope this helps.
Sabina

#5 babettebeau

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 07:25 PM

And nekton MSA, the tub of 40gr.
It expires after 3 months once opened, then you need to buy a new one. So that's why it is better to buy the smallest tub.
Only a tiny pinch sprinkled like dust on the leaves. Always the same dose regardless the quantity of food. For example if you increase or decrease food, the dose of Nekton MSA stays the same.
The dose is proportional to weight though, so for a baby toroise this is a tiny dose.

Sabina




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