Am I feeding too much? Baby Sulcata

DaneC020

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Hey guys! Me and my brother bought two baby sulcata's from a lady who had a pair that breed for the first time. I was in the market for one and my brother's was just kind of an impulse buy but he is a veterinarian and takes good care of his animals. I chose this lady's hatch-lings because she wasn't in it for the money so I could tell she really cared for the torts and they all looked very healthy and were eating in front of me vigorously.

So both of our torts are about a year and 5 months old now and doing well. But we both are feeding differently and don't know if either of us is feeding too much, the right amount, or too little(Doubtful). I am also concerned that their rapid growth lines are going to lead to early pyramiding which I want to try to avoid. So this is what we feed them and some pictures so you can see the shell/growth lines.

Daily
- A handful of springmix (Basically if you grabbed half a handful of spring mix and fluffed it to fill your entire hand)
- 1 Muzuri pellet (wet with fresh rye grass cut finely in)

Occasionally
- Yellow Squash
- Hibiscus flowers
- Cactus
- Zucchini
- Strawberry tops (Very rare)

My brother feeds about the same but he only does the muzuri pellet every 2 days. My tort eats about 80% of her greens and always eats the muzuri pellet. Here are pictures of their shells and you can see the scutes are raised slightly but from everyone else's pictures that looks like normal growth but I just want to make sure. Let me know what you guys think and we will adjust accordingly!

Thanks!
Dane

Edit: Also how long do you guys soak for and how often at this age? Mine drinks water all the time so I only soak every week but sometimes ever 3 days for about 20 minutes.
 

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Reptilony

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Is humidity always at 80% and are you soaking daily? That's the only reason why your babies might be pyramiding.
 

Reptilony

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Also pictures of the enclosure would help greatly all members to help you. Spring mix should not be the staple their diet.
 

DaneC020

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So you soak daily? I am not even sure if they are pyramiding. That's why I posted the photos because if they are showing early signs I want to try to increase humidity and do what ever I need to to focus on reducing it. From everyone elses baby pictures my shells look normal but wanted to be safe. Thats why I took some side ways shot so you could see the schutes at an angle to tell me if they are fine or not.
 

Reptilony

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The second picture look like it is starting to. Have you read the care sheets for sulcatas on this forum? Not enough humidity cause pyramiding. Soaking daily is essential for babies.
 

Reptilony

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To answer your question yes I personaly soak 2 times a day for 30 min.
 

Ray--Opo

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Welcome, you have a great looking sully. I started Opo out all wrong. When I found this forum I got on the right track with soaks and humidity. I struggle with pyramiding. It starts to get smoother. Then over night it seems to pop up again . So the struggle goes on. Wish I had found this forum earlier.
 

DaneC020

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To answer your question yes I personaly soak 2 times a day for 30 min.

Yes, I have read the care sheets but they don't specify at what age you reduce the soaking. Is 1.5 years old still considered a baby? I thought I also read that over feeding them causes them to grow too quickly and could also cause pyramiding? I will increase my soaks to daily then to try to help. But the amount of food I am feeding doesn't see overkill? I will read the care sheet again in case I forgot something since I read it when I first found this forum.
 

Reptilony

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Yes, I have read the care sheets but they don't specify at what age you reduce the soaking. Is 1.5 years old still considered a baby? I thought I also read that over feeding them causes them to grow too quickly and could also cause pyramiding? I will increase my soaks to daily then to try to help. But the amount of food I am feeding doesn't see overkill? I will read the care sheet again in case I forgot something since I read it when I first found this forum.
I tought they where younger. You may do it a couple times a week still it doesn't have to be every day but soaking doesn't hurt. You're just helping them by soaking. No you can't overfeed unless they show signs of obesity which really rarely happens and yours are not obese and still growing.
 

DaneC020

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Ok I think you're doing a better job than your brother lol. It's looking pretty smooth

Unfortunately both of our enclosures are open top so I mist mine every day a few times a day since I work from home. He unfortunately isn't able to do that so he soaks more often and mist when he can. I am in the process of upgrading my enclosure now since my sully is getting bigger and I am going to try and do a closed top somehow but leave a cut out for the light to try and help maintain a more consistent humidity. I was just really concerned I was causing too much growth with my feeding. I love my little sully and trying to do the best I can for him.
 

Reptilony

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Unfortunately both of our enclosures are open top so I mist mine every day a few times a day since I work from home. He unfortunately isn't able to do that so he soaks more often and mist when he can. I am in the process of upgrading my enclosure now since my sully is getting bigger and I am going to try and do a closed top somehow but leave a cut out for the light to try and help maintain a more consistent humidity. I was just really concerned I was causing too much growth with my feeding. I love my little sully and trying to do the best I can for him.
Yes this upgrade is a good idea. Do you have an hygrometer?
 

TechnoCheese

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Welcome to the forum!

There is no such thing as overfeeding a tortoise. In fact, they should have food available at all times.

You need a closed chamber enclosure. It is impossible to hold 80+% humidity in an open one, and it doesn’t look like the shell is smoothing out. What kind of hydrometer are you using?

You should be feeding mostly weeds and very few grocery store foods, and I wouldn’t feed mazuri more than once-twice a week. It can be pretty addictive to them.

I would continue to soak daily to stop the pyramiding, as well as getting a closed chamber enclosure.

I’m assuming the two tortoises live in separate enclosures?

If you haven’t already, please give these a read-
How To Raise A Healthy Sulcata Or Leopard, Version 2.0 https://tortoiseforum.org/index.php...ealthy-Sulcata-Or-Leopard,-Version-2.0.79895/

For Those Who Have a Young Sulcata... https://tortoiseforum.org/index.php?threads/For-Those-Who-Have-a-Young-Sulcata....76744/

Beginner Mistakes https://tortoiseforum.org/index.php?threads/Beginner-Mistakes.45180/
 

Maro2Bear

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Yes, I have read the care sheets but they don't specify at what age you reduce the soaking. Is 1.5 years old still considered a baby? I thought I also read that over feeding them causes them to grow too quickly and could also cause pyramiding? I will increase my soaks to daily then to try to help. But the amount of food I am feeding doesn't see overkill? I will read the care sheet again in case I forgot something since I read it when I first found this forum.

You definitely want to do daily soaks 20-30 mins or longer. How long? We stopped soaking ours when he got toooo heavy to easily lift every day AND was bigger than our cement mixing tub/container. @Tom is the Sulcata guru on here...soak soak soak, and feed good “stuff” , no fruits, and over feeding is not a cause of pyramiding (based on 100s of posts and the Sully Care Sheet).

Good luck.
 

Magz

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Every morning about 6am I roam the neighborhood yards looking for blooms and weeds. I mostly feed whats growing wild. But I also feed a breakfast of store produce. Mustard greens, greenleaf lettuce, radicchio, kale, collards and more. You cannot feed growing Sulcata too much. But you want to feed a wide variety of stuff. Also the molasses in the Mazuri can be addicting to young Sulcata.
Research all you can, and ask a lot of questions. Also you need a closed chamber, so for now wrap some aluminum foil over the open top. Soak in warm water daily. But not more as I believe that robs them of the nutrients in the fresh poop. Too many soaks makes the stool move thru too fast. Just my experience and opinion... 065.JPG
 

Magz

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111.JPG 093.JPG
This is Big Sam last year. He likes mud puddles. He'll turn 5 this year and just hit 45 pounds.In the middle is Knobby,the poster boy for pyramiding. He was found roaming the streets of Portland Oregon
 

DaneC020

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I am really surprised everyone is saying you can't over feed them. Most reptiles will eat as much as you can present to them, snakes for example would eat an unhealthy amount of mice if given the opportunity. Apparently I should give more food then? My tort would eat double what I put in there if I allowed it. I will try to do more soaks since many people recommend it. But please read my post as it is not a BABY. I need to make sure I am getting the right advice for my sulcata at her appropriate age.
 
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