Big sulcata together with small sulcata = Bad for the small one

Bee62

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Big sulcata ( s ) together with smaller sulcata ( s ) raised together, is bad for the smaller one, that`s what I learned from this forum. That`s what everybody told, and I have to say: You are so right !
My short story:
I bought 3 sulcata hatchlings from a breeder and they thrive and grow very well, but I wanted a fourth sully.
I found one from another breeder that is nearly the same age as my, but it is smaller. I bought the smaller one and put them all together in one enclosure.

The first time I saw no problems and believe me, I watch my torts well. The small tort grew and gained in weight too, but the big ones gain more.

After 3 months together I saw the three bigger sullies ( they are now 15 months old ) crawel over the smaller one, or push her away, like they would do it with a stone.

Food and eating was no problem because they get enough at several places, so that the smaller sully can eat too. But the bigger ones often disturb her while she was eating and one day I recognize that the small tort was getting slower. She often sat in a corner and moved not much and I know what was the reason for the change in her behavior.
She was not really sick but repressed by the bigger torts.
I took her and gave her a enclosure of her own and after two days later her behavior changed again. She was the lucky little tort that she was when she came to me. She is moving around and eating well. She loves to sit in her water dish where no one disturb her any longer.

The three big ones still have no problems with each other but I watch them attentively.
I wrote this for new tort owners that wants to raise more than one young sulcata tortoise.
Have always a close watch on your group of tortoises that one animal does not have to suffer under the oppression from the others.

I have learned my "lesson" soon.


Sabine

P.S. Thanks to all experiences sulcata tortoise keepers here for your warnings. With your experience I was able to see that my little sully was suffering from the bigger ones.
@Tom
@wellington
@Big Charlie
@Cowboy_Ken
@Grandpa Turtle 144
@Yvonne G
@Markw84

..... and the others I forgot !


Here is a picture of the small sully ( left ) sitting together with two bigger ones: DSCN1898
 

Bee62

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Thanks for this Sabine. We always warn of the problems of pairs, but sometimes the message that groups need to be of torts of similar size is missed.

I'm glad your little one is able to thrive now :)

Thank you Linda for putting my thread on the top of the sulcata section.
 

Bee62

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I'm not only glad you were aware so you could catch problems quickly, but that you did this thread so others can learn that what is said on this forum is only for the betterment of the tortoises an and to save the owners from grief.

Thank you for your praise. I like to share the observations I have with my torts.
 

Bee62

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Update:
My little sulcata tort "Shari" is doing well.
Since she is alone in her enclosure she is more active, baths often in her water bowl ( I soak her additionally ) and she gained 30 gram in
20 days.
What a success !
 

Bee62

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Here is an update on my 4 sully torts.
Since I kept my smallest tort alone she was thriving and growing well. She was soaking herself for hours in her water dish ( near the heat lamp ). I feared that she had kidney problems caused of the dry enclosure from the breeder, but she made it and is now growing, eating and gaining weight very well.
Because of this I am going to dare the attempt and put her back to the 3 bigger sullies and it works ! She is active, eating, roaming the enclosure and seems to have no longer fear being together with the bigger ones.
The time she was alone she made a growth spurt and gained 200 gr in one month. I will watch her weight too.
I observe the group very close but it seems to work.

Here are the newest pics of them.


DSCN2817
I observe the group very close but it seems to work.
Here are the newest pics of them.

DSCN2821
 

Big Charlie

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Here is an update on my 4 sully torts.
Since I kept my smallest tort alone she was thriving and growing well. She was soaking herself for hours in her water dish ( near the heat lamp ). I feared that she had kidney problems caused of the dry enclosure from the breeder, but she made it and is now growing, eating and gaining weight very well.
Because of this I am going to dare the attempt and put her back to the 3 bigger sullies and it works ! She is active, eating, roaming the enclosure and seems to have no longer fear being together with the bigger ones.
The time she was alone she made a growth spurt and gained 200 gr in one month. I will watch her weight too.
I observe the group very close but it seems to work.

Here are the newest pics of them.


View attachment 234913
I observe the group very close but it seems to work.
Here are the newest pics of them.

View attachment 234914
They look beautiful Bee! Such smooth shells.
 

Bee62

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They look beautiful Bee! Such smooth shells.
Thank you very much. With the good advices from TFO I was able to keep them right. I have to thank TFO and all the members and their aknowledge !
 

Changa

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Ok I seperated my The big from sml Sulcatas in the same enclosure
At first I thought theI lit one was looking for Dorey is the big one this morning they both were eating separately
It looks like their both happy campers
Thank u
Big sulcata ( s ) together with smaller sulcata ( s ) raised together, is bad for the smaller one, that`s what I learned from this forum. That`s what everybody told, and I have to say: You are so right !
My short story:
I bought 3 sulcata hatchlings from a breeder and they thrive and grow very well, but I wanted a fourth sully.
I found one from another breeder that is nearly the same age as my, but it is smaller. I bought the smaller one and put them all together in one enclosure.

The first time I saw no problems and believe me, I watch my torts well. The small tort grew and gained in weight too, but the big ones gain more.

After 3 months together I saw the three bigger sullies ( they are now 15 months old ) crawel over the smaller one, or push her away, like they would do it with a stone.

Food and eating was no problem because they get enough at several places, so that the smaller sully can eat too. But the bigger ones often disturb her while she was eating and one day I recognize that the small tort was getting slower. She often sat in a corner and moved not much and I know what was the reason for the change in her behavior.
She was not really sick but repressed by the bigger torts.
I took her and gave her a enclosure of her own and after two days later her behavior changed again. She was the lucky little tort that she was when she came to me. She is moving around and eating well. She loves to sit in her water dish where no one disturb her any longer.

The three big ones still have no problems with each other but I watch them attentively.
I wrote this for new tort owners that wants to raise more than one young sulcata tortoise.
Have always a close watch on your group of tortoises that one animal does not have to suffer under the oppression from the others.

I have learned my "lesson" soon.


Sabine

P.S. Thanks to all experiences sulcata tortoise keepers here for your warnings. With your experience I was able to see that my little sully was suffering from the bigger ones.
@Tom
@wellington
@Big Charlie
@Cowboy_Ken
@Grandpa Turtle 144
@Yvonne G
@Markw84

..... and the others I forgot !


Here is a picture of the small sully ( left ) sitting together with two bigger ones: View attachment 220063
my
 

Changa

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1858A94F AFA4 468B B793 E354EEF0F300
Big S ( s ) together with smaller sulcata ( s ) raised together, is bad for the smaller one, that`s what I learned from this forum. That`s what everybody told, and I have to say: You are so right !
My short story:
I bought 3 sulcata hatchlings from a breeder and they thrive and grow very well, but I wanted a fourth sully.
I found one from another breeder that is nearly the same age as my, but it is smaller. I bought the smaller one and put them all together in one enclosure.

The first time I saw no problems and believe me, I watch my torts well. The small tort grew and gained in weight too, but the big ones gain more.

After 3 months together I saw the three bigger sullies ( they are now 15 months old ) crawel over the smaller one, or push her away, like they would do it with a stone.

Food and eating was no problem because they get enough at several places, so that the smaller sully can eat too. But the bigger ones often disturb her while she was eating and one day I recognize that the small tort was getting slower. She often sat in a corner and moved not much and I know what was the reason for the change in her behavior.
She was not really sick but repressed by the bigger torts.
I took her and gave her a enclosure of her own and after two days later her behavior changed again. She was the lucky little tort that she was when she came to me. She is moving around and eating well. She loves to sit in her water dish where no one disturb her any longer.

The three big ones still have no problems with each other but I watch them attentively.
I wrote this for new tort owners that wants to raise more than one young sulcata tortoise.
Have always a close watch on your group of tortoises that one animal does not have to suffer under the oppression from the others.

I have learned my "lesson" soon.


Sabine

P.S. Thanks to all experiences sulcata tortoise keepers here for your warnings. With your experience I was able to see that my little sully was suffering from the bigger ones.
@Tom
@wellington
@Big Charlie
@Cowboy_Ken
@Grandpa Turtle 144
@Yvonne G
@Markw84

..... and the others I forgot !


Here is a picture of the small sully ( left ) sitting together with two bigger ones: View attachment 220063
Here is Donna and here is
Big sulcata ( s ) together with smaller sulcata ( s ) raised together, is bad for the smaller one, that`s what I learned from this forum. That`s what everybody told, and I have to say: You are so right !
My short story:
I bought 3 sulcata hatchlings from a breeder and they thrive and grow very well, but I wanted a fourth sully.
I found one from another breeder that is nearly the same age as my, but it is smaller. I bought the smaller one and put them all together in one enclosure.

The first time I saw no problems and believe me, I watch my torts well. The small tort grew and gained in weight too, but the big ones gain more.

After 3 months together I saw the three bigger sullies ( they are now 15 months old ) crawel over the smaller one, or push her away, like they would do it with a stone.

Food and eating was no problem because they get enough at several places, so that the smaller sully can eat too. But the bigger ones often disturb her while she was eating and one day I recognize that the small tort was getting slower. She often sat in a corner and moved not much and I know what was the reason for the change in her behavior.
She was not really sick but repressed by the bigger torts.
I took her and gave her a enclosure of her own and after two days later her behavior changed again. She was the lucky little tort that she was when she came to me. She is moving around and eating well. She loves to sit in her water dish where no one disturb her any longer.

The three big ones still have no problems with each other but I watch them attentively.
I wrote this for new tort owners that wants to raise more than one young sulcata tortoise.
Have always a close watch on your group of tortoises that one animal does not have to suffer under the oppression from the others.

I have learned my "lesson" soon.


Sabine

P.S. Thanks to all experiences sulcata tortoise keepers here for your warnings. With your experience I was able to see that my little sully was suffering from the bigger ones.
@Tom
@wellington
@Big Charlie
@Cowboy_Ken
@Grandpa Turtle 144
@Yvonne G
@Markw84

..... and the others I forgot !


Here is a picture of the small sully ( left ) sitting together with two bigger ones: View attachment 220063
 

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Changa

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Here is one long tortoise hehe
I have separate the enclosure among two everything seem fine so far so good Thank u learning A3CF1FD6 840E 49E9 BBD2 530F004D95AA
 

tag78

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Big sulcata ( s ) together with smaller sulcata ( s ) raised together, is bad for the smaller one, that`s what I learned from this forum. That`s what everybody told, and I have to say: You are so right !
My short story:
I bought 3 sulcata hatchlings from a breeder and they thrive and grow very well, but I wanted a fourth sully.
I found one from another breeder that is nearly the same age as my, but it is smaller. I bought the smaller one and put them all together in one enclosure.

The first time I saw no problems and believe me, I watch my torts well. The small tort grew and gained in weight too, but the big ones gain more.

After 3 months together I saw the three bigger sullies ( they are now 15 months old ) crawel over the smaller one, or push her away, like they would do it with a stone.

Food and eating was no problem because they get enough at several places, so that the smaller sully can eat too. But the bigger ones often disturb her while she was eating and one day I recognize that the small tort was getting slower. She often sat in a corner and moved not much and I know what was the reason for the change in her behavior.
She was not really sick but repressed by the bigger torts.
I took her and gave her a enclosure of her own and after two days later her behavior changed again. She was the lucky little tort that she was when she came to me. She is moving around and eating well. She loves to sit in her water dish where no one disturb her any longer.

The three big ones still have no problems with each other but I watch them attentively.
I wrote this for new tort owners that wants to raise more than one young sulcata tortoise.
Have always a close watch on your group of tortoises that one animal does not have to suffer under the oppression from the others.

I have learned my "lesson" soon.


Sabine

P.S. Thanks to all experiences sulcata tortoise keepers here for your warnings. With your experience I was able to see that my little sully was suffering from the bigger ones.
@Tom
@wellington
@Big Charlie
@Cowboy_Ken
@Grandpa Turtle 144
@Yvonne G
@Markw84

..... and the others I forgot !


Here is a picture of the small sully ( left ) sitting together with two bigger ones: View attachment 220063
I'm surprised - she doesn't look that much smaller than the others. This makes me wonder if I should attempt getting a partner for my 100lb buddy.
 

Big Charlie

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I'm surprised - she doesn't look that much smaller than the others. This makes me wonder if I should attempt getting a partner for my 100lb buddy.
No, definitely not. Your buddy doesn't need any friends. Sulcatas like being alone. My 100+ pound sulcata is happiest when there are no other creatures around. He feels threatened by the cats that come into our yard. He stands close to them in an attempt to intimidate them to leave. They don't get the message.
 

Yvonne G

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NO! Sabine's group works because it is more than two. Two tortoises don't work because you then have a dominant and a submissive. Three or more, never two.
 

tag78

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Hello Charlie,

I'm new here, thanks for the response. I didn't think he needed anything but I've had him for 12 years now and he hasn't told me one way or the other. I have seen the results of a fight between two large ones and it wasn't purdy. The skin got torn away from the shell at the neck area.

He always responds well to visitors and likes the whole family (and my neighbors who feed him through the fence). I have trained them well about his diet do's and don'ts. I told them, and they accepted, that they get him in my will. Their grandkids enjoy dropping mulberry branches and pumpkins into the yard and watching him go to work on them.

I was a little concerned about the ferrule cats that have moved in recently but there don't seem to be any problems so far. He is pretty sure of himself.
 

Big Charlie

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Hello Charlie,

I'm new here, thanks for the response. I didn't think he needed anything but I've had him for 12 years now and he hasn't told me one way or the other. I have seen the results of a fight between two large ones and it wasn't purdy. The skin got torn away from the shell at the neck area.

He always responds well to visitors and likes the whole family (and my neighbors who feed him through the fence). I have trained them well about his diet do's and don'ts. I told them, and they accepted, that they get him in my will. Their grandkids enjoy dropping mulberry branches and pumpkins into the yard and watching him go to work on them.

I was a little concerned about the ferrule cats that have moved in recently but there don't seem to be any problems so far. He is pretty sure of himself.
The cats will ignore him. The feral cats around here often have their babies in my yard as it is one of the few in the neighborhood without a dog. You should make sure he doesn't eat their poop.

My tortoise is generally curious about people. Whenever they come into the yard, he follows them around and sometimes gets in their way. Not so much the gardeners because he is used to them. You're lucky your neighbors like him. My neighbor put in a spite wall after he was afraid my tortoise would dig under the fence.
 

tag78

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Yea, they are great neighbors. We all have 1-acre lots and dirt roads. Our backyards have just a 4-foot chain-link fence between them and we talk all the time. He has had a lot of critters in the past so we get along really well. They love to visit with Herman. I think they see him more than I do. Their kitchen window faces the area I have set aside for him.

Funny you should mention your neighbor's worries about digging. Herm's burrow goes down about six feet away from their property line, turns hard left under a creosote bush and I'm not so sure his den isn't under his backyard. It's pretty deep and no traffic so I don't worry about it. TW
 

Big Charlie

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Yea, they are great neighbors. We all have 1-acre lots and dirt roads. Our backyards have just a 4-foot chain-link fence between them and we talk all the time. He has had a lot of critters in the past so we get along really well. They love to visit with Herman. I think they see him more than I do. Their kitchen window faces the area I have set aside for him.

Funny you should mention your neighbor's worries about digging. Herm's burrow goes down about six feet away from their property line, turns hard left under a creosote bush and I'm not so sure his den isn't under his backyard. It's pretty deep and no traffic so I don't worry about it. TW
Charlie dug a burrow that ended up under our house. We worried that our house was going to collapse so we filled it in. Ever since we built him a house with heat he hasn't dug. We also made him a summer house with a roof to keep him cool.

Where are you located? Is it warm enough all year for him to be outside without heat?
 

tag78

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Charlie dug a burrow that ended up under our house. We worried that our house was going to collapse so we filled it in. Ever since we built him a house with heat he hasn't dug. We also made him a summer house with a roof to keep him cool.

Where are you located? Is it warm enough all year for him to be outside without heat?
I live in the Mojave Desert, east of Bakersfield. It gets real hot and real cold so he has his underground, main den where he can stay cool and a heated shed for the real cold winter months. I have to plan ahead in the fall for the upcoming winter and block him out of his burrow. He went in late one fall and it got cold real quick so he was too lethargic to come out. I had to go in after him and that was no picnic. He was about 80lbs of dead weight and resistance. I learned a trick a couple of summers later - it had been real dry and dusty for some time so when I wet down his cave entrance and some water ran down into his living room, he came flying out. I guess instinct told him FLOOD! he wanted out of there right now. Looks like a good trick to get them out of a hole.

I have learned quite a bit about him over the years.
He has been a true source of entertainment. I enjoy him. And like I said, the neighbors love him too. Cheers, TW

( Xmas a couple of years after I got him from San Diego when he still would only eat what they had been feeding him, lettuce and veggies. I think he likes the desert now as much as I do)
Herm xmas pic
 

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