Female sulcata ..strange behavior?

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Tony the tank

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Well almost 3 month ago she laid eggs...since then she has been a really lazy girl..basking ,eating and pooping...but for the last 2 weeks she has been really active..and aggressive..(Rams my leg when I'm in her enclosure).. This is the same behavior she exhibited before she laid last time...Is it possible she is looking to lay another clutch??

She has had no contact with any other tort since her last clutch...

Thoughts..opinions?
 

dmarcus

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All I can think of is how everyone says females tortoises can retain sperm for a while...
 

dmarcus

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I also read a CTTC article with a breeder, "tried to find the article with no luck" that a strong breeder can lay eggs 30 days after the fist clutch.

Maybe the Captain can verify that, or one of the other sulcata breeders on here...
 

ascott

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Hector, I would test your water....lol....perhaps it has a weird affect on female sulcatas....:p:p Didn't you have a rather perky female situation awhile back? Or is this the same female....?
 

Tony the tank

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She has laid many clutches before I adopted her...but since her last clutch middle of November ..she has been sequestered from the other torts..

She has not shown any signs of digging.. but is really active..and as soon as I enter the enclosure..she comes right over and chases me around ..attempting to ram my leg..

Ascott..same issue different female..seems all the women in my life lately want to kill me...I stand corrected..they either need a favor or want to kill me:)
 

ascott

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she comes right over and chases me around

need a favor or want to kill me

LOL....it is the water I tell ya...LOL
:rolleyes:




Hector, does she do the same thing when you bring her food in?
 

Tom

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She is certainly due after 12 weeks. Mine lay around every 6-8 weeks all year long. Occasionally one will take a 12 week stretch off. None of mine ever get aggressive. They just pace a lot in areas of the giant enclosure that they normally don't go to very often. I just told a friend that all three of my females are due and two of them were out pacing the "back forty" yesterday. Told him I was due any day now. Told another friend this morning that I was expecting a clutch soon. Came back from lunch today to find Bertha digging a hole with her hind feet... Me and the little girl just dug them up and popped them into the incubator before dinner.
 

Tony the tank

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So she could lay another clutch even if she has had no contact since the last one??..

Last clutch in November was an ordeal with temps in the high 40..now temps are in the 20..can she handle that till she finds her spot to lay..last time took her 20 minutes before she started digging.then of course I will box her up and set up some heat lamps till she's done...

Anyone any thoughts..
 

dmmj

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Sulcatas can lay multiple clutches after only one mating with a male. As for the ramming, while it is possible she is protecting a spot, I think it is more likely she is just being aggressive, prior to laying, kind of like hormones.
 

Tony the tank

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Can I get her to lay inside..how much dirt will she need?? She dug deep last time almost 2 ft..that would be a lot of dirt..
 

dmmj

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You would have to set up a nest box, for a sulcata I would imagine it would have to be pretty big, and require a lot of dirt.
 

Katherine

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dmarcus said:
I also read a CTTC article with a breeder, "tried to find the article with no luck" that a strong breeder can lay eggs 30 days after the fist clutch.

Maybe the Captain can verify that, or one of the other sulcata breeders on here...

I have a female that lays 14-30 days apart...generally no longer than 35 days apart so it is absolutely possible she's ready to go again.

Tony the tank said:
Can I get her to lay inside..how much dirt will she need?? She dug deep last time almost 2 ft..that would be a lot of dirt..

I have never been able to get one to nest inside. One year during a stretch of hurricanes and severe flooding we even built a 2 ft deep sandbox for our confirmed gravid female and she would not have it...had to let her out in the cold soaking wet hard eventually. How bad is the weather there, if she is truly trying to lay is it a possibility you could get her outside for a day?
 

Tom

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Yep. No contact with a male necessary. Better get crackin' on a laying box too. They can get eggbound with out a suitable laying spot.
 

Tony the tank

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It's cold here..in the 20 and ground is hard...what do I need to do to accommodate her to lay inside...

How long can she hold on..without issue?

How do you make a laying box?
 

Tom

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I'm sorry Hector, I've never had to do it. I hope someone with experience will come along and offer some insight.

On a smaller scale I have made cut outs in the bottoms of enclosures to fit rubbermaid tubs and such to accommodate egg laying for other species. I would think that if you made a large above ground planter type thing that was around 18" deep and full of the appropriate dirt, with large, wide, gently sloped ramps leading up to it, she might take the hint. Or cut out a 4x4' square of the basement floor and pile up the dirt...

Mine just go out and lay whenever they want, so I really don't know how long they can hold on ot the eggs without it causing a problem. I imagine there are a lot of variables that would determine that answer.
 
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