Best outdoor tortoise for south Georgia?

Kikki

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Hi! My daughter has her heart set on a tortoise for Christmas. I would like for it to be outdoors. What tortoise best suits our humid south Georgia environment? She really wanted a Russian, but their humidity requirements are lower than our average humidity here. The closest match I see is maybe the red foot tortoise? Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!! I’m very new to this!
 

wellington

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Most if not all tortoises can use a high humidity as hatchlings, even Russians can use 80% as hatchlings around 50 as adults.
Redfoot, leopards, sulcata, just to name a few.
 

Tom

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Hi! My daughter has her heart set on a tortoise for Christmas. I would like for it to be outdoors. What tortoise best suits our humid south Georgia environment? She really wanted a Russian, but their humidity requirements are lower than our average humidity here. The closest match I see is maybe the red foot tortoise? Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!! I’m very new to this!
The problems is your winters. Its too cold outside for most species, and especially a tropical one like the redfoot. Summer would be great for them.

What would probably work best is to have a large indoor area for winter, and a large outdoor area for summer. Alternatively, a Hermanni would do just fine with your summer weather, and it could hibernate in winter.
 

Lyn W

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Hi and welcome,
You are very wise to research first so that you can chose the right species and have everything set up before he arrives.

There are caresheets for most species so maybe read through those and see which bests suit your climate and circumstances. Different species have different care needs.

Bear in mind that the bigger the tort the more space he will need as he grows (e.g. a minimum of 4 x 8 feet will be needed for juveniles of the smaller species but the bigger the better) and not all species hibernate.
(Don't be tempted or persuaded to get 2 - torts should never be kept in pairs).

Ask as many questions as you like, there's always someone around to help and make sure you buy the right equipment - it could save you some money too. (Pet stores are profit driven and often sell unsafe and unsuitable products for tortoises).
There's a lot of old and incorrect information still being given about tortoise care , but you'll only find up to date advice here from very experienced keepers.
 

Tom

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P.S. Where in South GA? I've become quite fond of the Senoia, PTC, Newnan area in the last few years. Been spending a lot of time back there working. I love GA. SoCal has nice weather most of the time and hardly any bugs, but everything is just so green and alive in GA. Spring and fall weather is glorious there, and winter isn't too bad most of the time. Summer is hot, but its hot here at my house too.
 

Kikki

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P.S. Where in South GA? I've become quite fond of the Senoia, PTC, Newnan area in the last few years. Been spending a lot of time back there working. I love GA. SoCal has nice weather most of the time and hardly any bugs, but everything is just so green and alive in GA. Spring and fall weather is glorious there, and winter isn't too bad most of the time. Summer is hot, but its hot here at
The problems is your winters. Its too cold outside for most species, and especially a tropical one like the redfoot. Summer would be great for them.

What would probably work best is to have a large indoor area for winter, and a large outdoor area for summer. Alternatively, a Hermanni would do just fine with your summer weather, and it could hibernate in winter.
thank you! That helps!! I’ll check out the Hermann!?
 

Krista S

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Welcome to the forum @Kikki ?

You’re already 10 steps ahead of most new tortoise keepers with having found the forum BEFORE bringing a tortoise into your life. Kudos to you for that! I agree with the advice you’ve been given here with Russian or Hermann’s tortoises being a good fit. I have a Hermann’s tortoise who has brought so much joy to my life. I’ve had him for 2 years and am still in awe of him everyday. Their personalities are incredible!! This can all be said for a Russian tortoise too, I just don’t have first hand experience with Russian tortoises.

Here is an excellent care sheet that was created by Tom that I think you’ll find helpful. It applies to either species you’re currently considering.


This next link is one that I wish I would have known existed before I got my tortoise. There’s a lot of helpful hints and food for thought in here:


If any questions arise, don’t be afraid to ask. As you’ve seen, there’s a lot of people on the forum who are happy to talk tortoises!
 

Kikki

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Welcome to the forum @Kikki ?

You’re already 10 steps ahead of most new tortoise keepers with having found the forum BEFORE bringing a tortoise into your life. Kudos to you for that! I agree with the advice you’ve been given here with Russian or Hermann’s tortoises being a good fit. I have a Hermann’s tortoise who has brought so much joy to my life. I’ve had him for 2 years and am still in awe of him everyday. Their personalities are incredible!! This can all be said for a Russian tortoise too, I just don’t have first hand experience with Russian tortoises.

Here is an excellent care sheet that was created by Tom that I think you’ll find helpful. It applies to either species you’re currently considering.


This next link is one that I wish I would have known existed before I got my tortoise. There’s a lot of helpful hints and food for thought in here:


If any questions arise, don’t be afraid to ask. As you’ve seen, there’s a lot of people on the forum who are happy to talk tortoises!
Thank you so much!!?
 

Bridgebob

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Hi! My daughter has her heart set on a tortoise for Christmas. I would like for it to be outdoors. What tortoise best suits our humid south Georgia environment? She really wanted a Russian, but their humidity requirements are lower than our average humidity here. The closest match I see is maybe the red foot tortoise? Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!! I’m very new to this!
I have an Eastern Box Turtle (I still can't figure out why she's not a Tortoise).

Easy to take of. In Georgia they can easily live oudoors all year.

When they Brumate during the winter they will be very inactive. I mean Comatose.

I think the enclosure has to be somewhat tunnel proof.

Your daughter has to be prepared for the EBT diet. They will eat anything. Mine has a taste for spiders.

But they are good pets. They don't bite and are affectionate when they become used too you.
 

Toddrickfl1

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I have an Eastern Box Turtle (I still can't figure out why she's not a Tortoise).

Easy to take of. In Georgia they can easily live oudoors all year.

When they Brumate during the winter they will be very inactive. I mean Comatose.

I think the enclosure has to be somewhat tunnel proof.

Your daughter has to be prepared for the EBT diet. They will eat anything. Mine has a taste for spiders.

But they are good pets. They don't bite and are affectionate when they become used too you.
Unfortunately Boxies are illegal to own here in GA.
 

Kikki

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I have an Eastern Box Turtle (I still can't figure out why she's not a Tortoise).

Easy to take of. In Georgia they can easily live oudoors all year.

When they Brumate during the winter they will be very inactive. I mean Comatose.

I think the enclosure has to be somewhat tunnel proof.

Your daughter has to be prepared for the EBT diet. They will eat anything. Mine has a taste for spiders.

But they are good pets. They don't bite and are affectionate when they become used too you.
Thanks for sharing! I have been suggesting a box turtle to her bc they are so cute and more natural for this climate, but she has her heart set on a “tortoise” (?)
 

TortoisesFLA

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From sunny, muggy west coast of Florida: I highly recommend Hermann's as they're sweet natured, they stay small (and portable if you're wintering them elsewhere) they don't tunnel out, and they're very easy to care for, especially since you have this forum as a resource.
Bonus: their diet of vegetables is super easy to acquire and isn't attractive to other critters (as leftover fruit or insects might be)
 

Bridgebob

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Eastern Box Turtles will eat anything!

The climate in Florida may too much for them. And snakes and alligators would probably eat them.

My Eastern Box Turtle loves brumating even indoors now.

Her favorite is eggs and fruit!
 

Kikki

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From sunny, muggy west coast of Florida: I highly recommend Hermann's as they're sweet natured, they stay small (and portable if you're wintering them elsewhere) they don't tunnel out, and they're very easy to care for, especially since you have this forum as a resource.
Bonus: their diet of vegetables is super easy to acquire and isn't attractive to other critters (as leftover fruit or insects might be)
Thank you so much! I do feel good about going with a Hermann's now. Ive got to figure out this hibernating thing though..will it hibernate on its own? I'm sure that's on another post..That will be my next research topic! :)
 

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