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Tom
Last Activity:
Sep 14, 2019 at 10:43 PM
Joined:
Jan 9, 2010
Messages:
45,421
Likes Received:
25,272
Trophy Points:
113
Gender:
Male
Location (City and/or State):
Southern California
Occupation:
Animal Trainer

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Tom

The Dog Trainer, Male, from Southern California

5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

Ask me questions in a forum post. Not enough space to answer correctly here. Jul 19, 2018

Tom was last seen:
Sep 14, 2019 at 10:43 PM
    1. Jimmy Sanchezpadilla
      Jimmy Sanchezpadilla
      Hello new member here I just wanted to ask why is my baby leopard tortoise eating and more active at night time then any other time
      1. Tom
        Tom
        It would be best to start a thread on the open forum about this. When you do let us know what heating and lighting equipment you are using day and night and what your four temps are.
        Feb 19, 2016
    2. Markw84
      Markw84
      I am getting 3 or 4 that are 5"-6" so I'm guessing a few years away from breeding? What size would you say they mature? Are you recommending against an outside enclosure for them? How big is your indoor enclosure for yours & how many?
      1. View previous comments...
      2. Markw84
        Markw84
        I know I will be. I am very excited. I had a picture of Platynota on my office wall back in the early 90's as the species I hoped to end up with one day!
        Feb 18, 2016
      3. Tom
        Tom
        I didn't even know what they were in the early 90's. I only knew of the Sri Lankans and Indians back then. I've been told most of the current breeding stock of this species came into the states in the late 90's.
        Feb 18, 2016
      4. Markw84
        Markw84
        Maybe it was Sri Lankans I was reading about, but the picture sure seemed like Burmese = six rays. Anyway, a dream coming true.
        Feb 18, 2016
    3. Markw84
      Markw84
      Also making a new night box for the outdoor enclosure. I see yours are bare wood bottom as no substrate goes on the kane mat. So do they need a humid night box? do you do anything for humidity for your Burmese in an outdoor night hide?

      Thank you again, and I look forward to comparing notes as we both do more with this great species.
      1. Tom
        Tom
        I don't keep my Bermese outside. They are locked up in the house and literally under guard by two bite trained malinois as well as an over-protective owner who also bites.

        My other torts get some dirt on the floors in the houses with Kane mats. This makes clean up much easier.
        Feb 17, 2016
      2. Tom
        Tom
        Are you getting adults?
        Feb 17, 2016
    4. Markw84
      Markw84
      I am making a 3x8 chamber for them The last one I built, I put in a vent on either side, copying your 2015 experiment. Do you find that vent is necessary? I am concerned the enclosure will get too hot in the summer months, so what do you do to keep yours cooler. With a 65 watt backing light and tube fluorescent in my babies' 3x4 enclosure - it already gets to the max I like and its still the end of winter!
      1. Tom
        Tom
        I use a lower wattage bulb, and I did open those vents during this hot spell, but now I have to use a lot more water to keep humidity up.
        Feb 17, 2016
    5. Markw84
      Markw84
      Tom Thank you for the referral to James. I will be getting a small group of Platynota next week from him. I do have a few questions to ensure I'm setting them up correctly. I guess I need to split it up as I am limited to 420 characters...
    6. c7m3d
      c7m3d
      Hi Tom, as a new member I just wanted to thank you for your invaluable advice. I have plans to purchase my first Leopard tortoise this summer and it's important for me to research and learn how to provide an environment wherein my tortoise will thrive. I have purchased many books but I must say I have learned more by reading your threads than I have collectively in these outdate texts. I cannot thank you enough!
      1. Tom
        Tom
        Tortoise care info is constantly evolving as new things are learned tried out and incorporated. Unfortunately books, and many people too, are not able to keep up with the changes and improvements. This forum allows us a unique opportunity to share info and compare notes.

        I'm glad you found us! Read this one before you buy:
        http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/hatchling-failure-syndrome.23493/
        Feb 13, 2016
      2. Tom
        Tom
        Feb 13, 2016
      3. c7m3d
        c7m3d
        Much appreciated. Thanks again Tom.
        Feb 13, 2016
    7. Paul M Jones
      Paul M Jones
      This site won't let me post pics anymore saying there is an issue with the server. And I don't know how to start a thread
    8. Paul M Jones
      Paul M Jones
      Hey tom. My name is Paul and I'm in a bit of a bind. I have two sulcatas, one 10 months old 305 grams and the other 6 months old 126 grams, they are in a 55 gal tank, custom lid to keep humidity in. Humidity is 80-90% temps are 90-100, bout 110 basking area, tank has Cypress mulch, heat bulbs, and a night heat lamp. I soak them every day for 25 mins, my issue is that there still pyramiding. What Can i do?
      1. Paul M Jones
        Paul M Jones
        I wrote a lot more but it wouldn't let me post all of it, I'd post pictures but for some reason the site won't let me.
        Jan 22, 2016
      2. Tom
        Tom
        Hi Paul. You should post this along with your pics as a regular thread on the forum.
        Jan 23, 2016
    9. Csr7
      Csr7
      Tom, I see that your closed enclosures house multiple baby tortoise. What size would be Ideal for just 1 Russian baby tortoise? And for how long before going to a 4X8 enclosure.Thanks of your time
      1. Tom
        Tom
        Ideal for a single baby? Hmmm… I'd say a 40 or 60 gallon tank would be good. 18x36 or 18 x48 inches.

        I would go to 4x8 feet once the tortoise reaches 3-4".
        Jan 13, 2016
    10. skyhashu
      skyhashu
      Tom, I am working on my night box for my 2 year old sulcata. I am in AZ on the out scerts of the vally where it gets to about 30 at night. I know your suggestion on the oil heater but was wondering if you can help on one I want to buy (size, style, price, ect..)
      1. Tom
      2. skyhashu
        skyhashu
        Thanks. Im just looking for a tip on just the style of oil heater to buy.
        Jan 13, 2016
      3. Tom
        Tom
        Jan 13, 2016
    11. Markw84
      Markw84
      Tom. I posted a new thread wanting discussion on my old ways of keeping my tortoise house - not a warm as you do. I especially would love to hear your comments on this. I have really come to respect what you have done and what you have to offer. And a real personal THANK YOU for the experiment on humidity that helped so much.
      1. Tom
        Tom
        The respect is mutual my friend. I already saw your thread and was typing up a reply as you left this message. I'll see you back over on your thread!
        Dec 31, 2015
    12. Crzt4torts
      Crzt4torts
      I'm new to the site, have been reading a lot of your info on raising baby Russians. Assuming a group of babies are getting along without incident-when do you recommend breaking them up and housing separately?
      1. Tom
        Tom
        When they cease to get along. Mine are all still fine going into their third year together. When they come out of hibernation this year, I will be watching very closely.
        Dec 28, 2015
    13. gamera154
      gamera154
      tom what are the best things to plant in a russian tortoise outdoor enclosure so i can plant before i get one
      1. View previous comments...
      2. Tom
        Tom
        Geraniums might survive. Cape honeysuckle and hibiscus won't survive. You can grow African hibiscus every spring, but it will die at the first fall frost. I just grow new ones avery year. Certain cactus varieties will survive there too.
        Dec 24, 2015
      3. gamera154
        gamera154
        ok good heres what i have growing right now alo vera, chia, sweet basil(i saw the sprouts today),we also have rose plants (no bug killers or growth hormones used becuase of the abundance of afids every spring) oh and are green peppers safe for torts
        Dec 24, 2015
      4. Tom
        Tom
        Occasional small amounts of any color bell pepper are fine.
        Dec 25, 2015
    14. Jayme
      Jayme
      Tom, need advice my tortoise that's 6 months old has gotten bit by a dog that got in yard. His has a small hole in shall.
      1. Tom
        Tom
        I would have an experienced reptile vet check it, but in the mean time use the same wound treatment techniques that you would use for your self. Clean it once with beta dine or hydrogen peroxide, and then keep some triple anti-biotic on it.
        Dec 24, 2015
    15. cupuente18
      cupuente18
      hey Tom, why is sand not a recommended substrate?
      1. Tom
        Tom
        Its a big impaction risk. It sticks to the food and tortoises swallow it. The sand can collect in their gut and over time, it can cause a blockage. Many tortoises have died because of this, and many tortoises have had to have their plastrons literally sawed open and their guts cut open to remove sand impaction blockages. Its awful and easily preventable.
        Dec 23, 2015
      2. Tom
        Tom
        In addition to the above, sand is also a potential skin and eye irritant. I've seen many cases of eye infections with tortoises on sand, or sand mix substrates.
        Dec 23, 2015
    16. astock64
      astock64
      We are in Nevada too cold for our sulcada to grace outside much does anybody grow grass inside and how, grow lights?
      1. Tom
        Tom
        Do a search for Prairie Mom's and Odin's Grandma's posts. Both of them have posted lots about this recently.
        Dec 16, 2015
    17. paludarium
      paludarium
      Tom, may I get the permission to translate your post "2015 Growth Experiment" into Chinese and post the article with the pictures on my website www.paludarium.net ? Thank you.
      1. Tom
        Tom
        Yes. Please feel free. I've got one more final post to do with pics and weights demonstrating the results. You might want to wait for that. I'm trying to find the time to get it done.
        Dec 4, 2015
      2. paludarium
        paludarium
        Thank you so much. I can't wait to see the result.
        Dec 5, 2015
    18. astock64
      astock64
      Tom, lately our sulcata has begun to make a loud squeaking or squealing sound, loud enough to hear beyond a closed door appettite and other functions appear normal, no visiable injuries. Any thoughts or just normal Thx Art
      1. Tom
        Tom
        What size and age? How often do you soak? What do you feed? Is it having regular bowel movements?
        Nov 30, 2015
      2. astock64
        astock64
        about two pounds prob 6 yrs old we acquired her about 3 yrs ago( I reported her situation in earlier posts) in our care she has a proper habitat, and grazes in the lawn and i grow a mixed blend of grasses, bowel movements normal has grown steadily in our care
        Dec 1, 2015
      3. Tom
        Tom
        Noises are usually a respiratory infection starting or constipation. Does the tortoise live outside? Where? How are you heating it? How often do you soak?

        We would have more room to discuss if you put this question on a thread in the sulcata section.
        Dec 1, 2015
    19. Nik
      Nik
      Guyz please help me y my star tortoise pair don't like to bask in sun.. Wen I leav them in sun they move back to shade and sleeps..
      1. Tom
        Tom
        That is normal tortoise behavior. They often don't like sitting out in the open because it exposes them to predators. It could also men they are already feeling warm enough.
        Nov 22, 2015
      2. Nik
        Nik
        but how can they will get d3
        Nov 23, 2015
      3. Tom
        Tom
        They will get enough just being outside. In time they will get more comfortable in their enclosure and move around in the sun more.

        Start a thread and post some pics of the enclosure so we can offer better tips.
        Nov 23, 2015
    20. waretrop
      waretrop
      Tom, Please have patients with people who have different opinions than you. They come here to learn about these animals. You put down the most useful people, that we all could benefit from here. Along with you and these others would make this place such a great place. Putting people down is very belittling to you....You are really much better than that....Please stop....Barb
      1. Tom
        Tom
        You will have to fill me in on what you are talking about. Feel free to message me about this as typing space is limited on our profiles. Happy to discuss it with you.
        Nov 13, 2015
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  • About

    Gender:
    Male
    Location (City and/or State):
    Southern California
    Occupation:
    Animal Trainer
    I got my first box turtle in 1979. I started caring for Chelonians and other animals as a paid profession in 1986, and I'm still doing it. I've been keeping sulcatas and leopards since the early 90's. I've been using humidity and hydration to grow smooth tortoises since 2008, after many years of trying and failing using other methods and advice for two decades.
    :D :tort:

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    Knowledge is learning from your own mistakes. Wisdom is learning from the mistakes of others...