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What Is Shell Rot?


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#1 babettebeau

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Posted 19 February 2018 - 10:35 PM

Hello

What is the underlying cause of shell rot?
I read that the cause is a fungus.

Does the fungus develop in warm humid conditions?

Does the fungus NOT develop in cold humid conditions (for example humid substrate during hibernation)?

Thanks
Sabina

#2 wizzasmum

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 10:32 AM

Hi Sabina
It’s usually when either conditions are not right or following an injury. Fungal can be caused by continual damp conditions, where the tortoise isn’t able to find a dry basking spot, but it can also happen following injury for the same reasons. Bacterial is similar, but more likely to follow an injury or keeping in dirty conditions. In over 35 years I’ve only seen it once in my own tortoises and that was when my vet (yes really) dropped one of my tortoises splitting his carapace. After a fibreglass repair the rot set in, but after removing this patch, debriding and replacing with a more flexible repair the shell healed nicely and no rot reappeared.

#3 babettebeau

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 02:15 PM

Thanks Sue.

What about damp substrate (damp cococoir) in which tortoises are hibernating in (refrigeration method)? The substrate is maintained damp for 8-10 weeks at cold temperature (4-6 degrees Celsius). Are they at risk of shell rot despite that they were fit and healthy prior to entering in the fridge? 

I know.... I ask a lot of questions  :rolleyes:



#4 wizzasmum

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 03:31 PM

Haha. Don’t make it too damp. Remember that underground it’s pretty damp too compared to most people’s hibermation methods. Any ideas on this anyone, metabolism?




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