First post. Introductions included

Tortugaskontortugas

New Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2021
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
West Covina Ca
Hi all my name is Khanh (pronounced con) and this is my first post to this wonderful forum. Second time tortoise owner. First time was decades ago and after reading a lot I have been upgrading my enclosures over and over. Almost to the perfect enclosure...but for now it’s doing the job even if it is inefficient. I haven’t named them yet...after reading so many stories of young torts dying I figure I’ll name them once they’re a little older and I’m a little more confident. So without further ado....here’s a intro of my little leos.
Number 1 coming in at 217 grams. Got him/her from a petshop near by. Definitely had a lot of pyramiding but she was large and I got a good price to save her. Not sure on age...I’m guessing around 1.5 years.
Number 2 at 66 grams is from a local hobbyist. She breeds them and sells them locally. Starts them off right with high temps and high humidity.
Number 3 at 59 grams came from same hobbyist. Both 2 and 3 from same batch.
Number 4 at 55 grams came from a local socal breeder “torts ‘r’ us”. They raise them up right as well.
Number 5 weighs in at 46 grams. Same batch as number 4. Very cool patterns from this breeder. They have a Facebook page with pictures of all their torts. So many beautiful and unique patterns.
Number 6 comes in at 41 grams. Same breeder as 2 and 3 but different clutch of eggs.
Last but not least number 7 is only 38 grams. Same clutch as 6.

So that’s the whole family. I’ve only had them 1-4 months but hopefully with luck they get along and I’ll be able to keep everyone. Thanks for all this forum has taught me and will continue to teach me. Hopefully my torbies will grow up big and beautiful like the many I’ve seen on here. Grateful for everyone and their hard work here. Hopefully I can contribute in the future.
 

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KarenSoCal

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Welcome to the forum!
Your babies are adorable! Do you have them in a closed chamber? It must be fairly large for 7 of them!

You've probably seen our care sheet, but just in case you haven't, here it is!

 

Tortugaskontortugas

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Joined
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Location (City and/or State)
West Covina Ca
It’s a 5’x2’x15”(how big is recommended?) closed chamber...for the most part. Humidity is high enough to get condensation on the covers. But my lights are outside the container so most of my heat is escaping. I was planning on building an 8-12’x4’ enclosure soon. How big would you recommend? I plan to keep them indoors for about 2-3 years before letting them out.
 

KarenSoCal

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The minimum recommended size for 1 adult Russian is 8' x 4'. In 3 years those babies will have grown a lot. With 7 of them, you will need multiple hides, multiple food and water dishes, plus plants for humidity and hiding places, and need space for them to walk around. So I would plan on at least 12' x 4'. Since a sheet of plywood is 8 x 4, maybe make it 8 x 8, or 16 x 4.

However, I have never raised babies and am really guessing. I'll tag a couple members who know about leopards, and will be able to give much better info.

@wellington
@Tom
 

wellington

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I used a 4x4 that I divided in half down to a 2x4 for one hatchling. At about a year opened it up to the 4x4 for about another year.
When I had 4 hatchlings at one time they were in the 4x4 but sold before they needed more room.
You might get a year with the size you have. They should be in closed chamber for about 3 years, so you will need to add on or build another and seperate.
The 15 inches I assume is the height and that is worrisome. Most heat/lights have to hang at no lower then12 inches from torts. That's not a lot of room left to raise the heating if needed. Be sure to use thermostats so the heat will not cook them.
 

Tom

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If you raise them right with humidity and hydration, you won't be able to keep them indoors that long. They'll be too big.

You may as well get a 4x8 foot enclosure going, and that should last them until its time to move outside full time with a heated night box.

I recommend having both an indoor and an outdoor enclosure. Put them outside in a safe enclosure two or three times a week for an hour or two. Increase the duration and frequency as they gain size. At 500-1000 grams they can stays outside all day in fair weather and sleep inside. After that, you'll need to move them outside. You might get two years, but sometimes not, depending on diet and individual growth.

When raising groups, I like to keep them together until I can tell the sexes, and then separate the juvenile males from the juvenile females. You don't want the females breeding when they are too small, as they can get egg bound. Additionally, the males mature much sooner, and they will stress and harass the young females. Let your young females grow in peace. You can re-introduce them all to live together when the females are large enough and fully mature.
 

Tortugaskontortugas

New Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2021
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
West Covina Ca
I used a 4x4 that I divided in half down to a 2x4 for one hatchling. At about a year opened it up to the 4x4 for about another year.
When I had 4 hatchlings at one time they were in the 4x4 but sold before they needed more room.
You might get a year with the size you have. They should be in closed chamber for about 3 years, so you will need to add on or build another and seperate.
The 15 inches I assume is the height and that is worrisome. Most heat/lights have to hang at no lower then12 inches from torts. That's not a lot of room left to raise the heating if needed. Be sure to use thermostats so the heat will not cook them.
The lights don’t hang in the enclosure they’re outside so it’s 15 inches from the basking area. The basking temp is around 80-100 while ambient temps have been around 70-90 The plan is to build something taller where I can put the lamps inside and buy a thermometer that will turn on and off the CHE once the proper temps are reached.
 

Tortugaskontortugas

New Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2021
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
West Covina Ca
If you raise them right with humidity and hydration, you won't be able to keep them indoors that long. They'll be too big.

You may as well get a 4x8 foot enclosure going, and that should last them until its time to move outside full time with a heated night box.

I recommend having both an indoor and an outdoor enclosure. Put them outside in a safe enclosure two or three times a week for an hour or two. Increase the duration and frequency as they gain size. At 500-1000 grams they can stays outside all day in fair weather and sleep inside. After that, you'll need to move them outside. You might get two years, but sometimes not, depending on diet and individual growth.

When raising groups, I like to keep them together until I can tell the sexes, and then separate the juvenile males from the juvenile females. You don't want the females breeding when they are too small, as they can get egg bound. Additionally, the males mature much sooner, and they will stress and harass the young females. Let your young females grow in peace. You can re-introduce them all to live together when the females are large enough and fully mature.
I’ve been soaking them for about 30-45 min each day in the sun. I’ve been looking to build a small outdoor enclosure so they can run around but for now I just put up some 2x4 in the walkway (half sun half shade) and let them roam for 30 min after 30-45 min of soaking. I would like to do it on grass but I’ve lost them too many times in grass without a cage.
I plan to separate them once sexual maturity hits. I don’t want the females to breed early. If I do breed them it will be at least 1-3 years into maturity and I’ll probably rehome/trade off most of the males.
 

wellington

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The lights don’t hang in the enclosure they’re outside so it’s 15 inches from the basking area. The basking temp is around 80-100 while ambient temps have been around 70-90 The plan is to build something taller where I can put the lamps inside and buy a thermometer that will turn on and off the CHE once the proper temps are reached.
You need to not let temps go below 80 ever when babies specially. If the lights are on the outside then it's likely not a true and constant 80% humidity which it needs to be. Find a way to cover the enclosure completely.
Hard to tell by the pics but they all look like pyramiding has already started. It's hard to stop once started and without a closed chamber it will be neat impossible.
 
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