2015 Growth Experiment

DeanS

SULCATA OASIS
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Today, two of the babies Tom hatched last year are a year old! The rest did not hatch out for another week...so I'm going to wait until the 19th to do a full-blown update. However, I will tell you that the two smallest specimens are 1,029 grams and 1,011 grams. The 2 largest...1,564 grams and 1,482 grams. The four in between range from 1,074 grams to 1,305 grams. The three smallest are all between 6.5" and 6.75" while the others are ALL (at least) 7" with the two largest just over 7.5"

Hope that whets your appetite for more... ;) :tort:
 

DeanS

SULCATA OASIS
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The 8s are a year old today! HUGE thanks to Tom and his brilliance at incubating and brooding! The difference between these and others I raised in the past is that these guys got to spend most of their first year in an artificial burrow...the temp was set at 90º by radiant panel only. I mounted it directly in the center of the ceiling...12" above the top of their carapaces. The footprint of the 'burrow' is 48X24. Being as the RHP measures 32X12, they had the opportunity to seek cooler areas...i.e. the walls of the burrow...which were about 10º cooler than the settings. Although primarily kept in the dark, the burrow does have a Reptisun 10.0 UVB tube mounted at one end...to properly maintain circadian rhythm. These guys (and gals) are the most ridiculously perfect sullies I've ever raised...strong, healthy and ZERO pyramiding! Check out their progress here...

http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/8-new-babies-from-tom-aka-the-bond-girls-maybe.118641/page-7
 

Lori lawson

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Hey Tom, I have the two baby sulcatas they were supposed to be 6 mos in October. One has doubled in size to now be 6 oz in wt. the other has only gone from 1.85oz to 2.15 oz. any idea why one grows so slow? Both are healthy and eating well
 

SarahChelonoidis

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Hey Tom, I have the two baby sulcatas they were supposed to be 6 mos in October. One has doubled in size to now be 6 oz in wt. the other has only gone from 1.85oz to 2.15 oz. any idea why one grows so slow? Both are healthy and eating well

Are they living together as a pair? If so, having one out grow the other is quite common - and part of why it's never recommended to keep them in pairs. A dominant tortoise controls the food and good basking spots so is more successful.
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
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Hey Tom, I have the two baby sulcatas they were supposed to be 6 mos in October. One has doubled in size to now be 6 oz in wt. the other has only gone from 1.85oz to 2.15 oz. any idea why one grows so slow? Both are healthy and eating well

Yeah… What Sarah said.
 

Lori lawson

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Yeah… What Sarah said.
Nope. Torts seperate per toms advice early on. They were supposed to be 6 mos old. Perhaps smaller one was younger?? Do they grow slower when younger? Also, what a great day to keep outdoors! Enclosed of course. But, they don't spend much time in full sun. They both go under small provided shade space. Is that ok? Or should I remove shade spaces?
 

Stuart S.

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I'm not sure how to make a general post to tortoise forum but I really want to find kona a good home. Please let me know that you got my message prior to this one about kona

Hi Lori, if you look for the marketplace section of the forum there are threads for folks that are looking for homes for their torts...if that's what you're referring to. I'm sure someone here would love to take your Kona. Where are you located and do you have any pictures? I hope everything works out.
 

Stuart S.

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I'm not sure how to make a general post to tortoise forum but I really want to find kona a good home. Please let me know that you got my message prior to this one about kona

Hey Lori, I'm sorry I just saw your post in the for sale section. Disregard my last post, I hope you find a home for your baby.
 

Lori lawson

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Hi Lori, if you look for the marketplace section of the forum there are threads for folks that are looking for homes for their torts...if that's what you're referring to. I'm sure someone here would love to take your Kona. Where are you located and do you have any pictures? I hope everything works out.
In desert hot springs,ca. Not sure how to put photo in forum?
 

Tom

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Well im guessing you just posted this because you saw my post talking about it. Thank you for the update. How long did this take to happen?
Two years before the bottom fell out. Then I patched it up and made it last one more year. I finally replaced it with an Animal Plastics enclosure of the same dimensions.
 

silvaricci

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May 24, 2020
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My goal this year is to try to grow these tortoises very smooth and healthy without using any incandescent bulbs. It has become known that the IR-A generated by the commonly used incandescent bulbs has an extremely desiccating effect on our tortoise's carapaces. They need heat, but I am trying to find an alternative to the hot desiccating over head lights that we typically use.

Further reasoning: It is my educated guess (Which unfortunately will have to do until a field researcher collects some hard data...) that young sulcatas spend the monsoon season hiding in the thick underbrush that occurs in their part of the world. The conditions in this area would have to be quite warm and humid and that is the reason for this particular enclosure set up.

The enclosure is a 3x6' closed chamber. Here it is mostly built:
14vnsqp.jpg


Here it is being sealed with Drylok masonry paint. This is my first time trying out the DryLok. So far so good.
bgbsq9.jpg


Here it is all finished but empty:
xcuhzr.jpg


Here is all the heating and lighting:
2d1hkm.jpg


Here is the mess of wires that controls all the heating and lighting:
29z8raw.jpg


There are basically four systems at work to heat and light the enclosure:
1. I have two 12x12" radiant heat panels set on a thermostat to 80 degrees. This maintains ambient at no lower than 80 day and night.
2. I have a regular florescent tube set on a timer to come on around 7am and turn off around 7pm.
3. On the timer that controls the above light, I have a thermostat connected to an additional 12x21" radiant heat panel that is set to 90 degrees. So at 7am the lights kick on and this panel slowly begins to warm the whole enclosure up to around 90. Then at 7pm the light and heat panel kick of and the temperature slowly drops back down to 80ish. This is my best guess at what the temperature does on the hot rainy days over in Africa when the sulcatas have hatched and dug out of their nest chambers.
4. I have an Arcadia 12% HO florescent tube set on a timer to come on for about 5 hours a day from 11am to 4 pm. This is to simulate the higher UV levels that occur mid day.

And of course, the test subjects:
I hatched out 14 little babies from one clutch. Dean took 8 and I kept 6 for this experiment. The eggs were laid January 8th, 2015 and I hatched them out about 3 months later. After a week or so in the brooder boxes, the babies were moved into their enclosure. Dean randomly selected his 8 and the ones he didn't pick are the subject of this experiment.
2gv1ow6.jpg


Here they are making themselves at home:
oap639.jpg



These babies all hatched between 31 and 34 grams. Since that time they have all grown to between 57 and 64 grams. They get soaked daily and sunned in a large tub three or four times a week for an hour or two. They are eating only a wide variety of weeds, grass and cactus. I'm not raising them with Mazuri or any other prepared foods. So far they look amazing and their health, vigor, growth and appetite suggest they are thriving in very way.
Hi! I'm very interested in this project, yet I can't see the images!
Am I doing something wrong?
Thanks so much!!!
 
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