Greeting from the California Bay Area

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MrChadley

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Hello!
So, I just got my first Tortoise, and his name is Malcolm. He is a Russian Male, and is around 10 years old. I got him from a Tortoise Rescue here in Castro Valley (more on that in a moment).

I've wanted a Tortoise since I first saw one in a pet show when I was. 14. I waited patiently for 12 years, telling all my friends how cool it would be when I got my tortoise, and now I finally have it.

I didn't see any mention of this on the Forum, so I want to let anyone who lives in Norther California know that there's an amazing, (but not very publicly known about) Tortoise Rescue here in my home town of Castro Valley, and a 30 minutes away from San Fransisco. It is a couple that keeps over 100 tortoises, plus a few turtles. They have Sulcatas, Russians, Redfoots, Greeks, Elongatas, Desert Tortoises, the works. They'll let you get a Desert Tortoise for free, a Russian for $50, and I think most other types are like $120. I think they're the biggest tortoise rescue in CA. Anyways, they pay for taking care of them out of pocket, and they do a great job, so if you're in Nor Cal and want a Tortoise, stop here before you go to a shop that might get theirs out of the wild or something. Here's an article about it: http://articles.sfgate.com/2008-08-10/bay-area/17120992_1_tortoises-ginger-wilfong-zoos

Anyways, I'm very exited about being a tortoise owner, and I'm sure I'll come up with lots of questions for you tortoise-experts on this forum.

Thanks for all your future help!
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Yvonne G

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Hi MrChadley:

First of all, welcome to the forum!! We're glad to have you become one of our nor-cal members!

Most of the turtles and tortoises at Gary and Ginger Wilfong's place (Bay Area Turtle & Tortoise Rescue) are animals in their own collection. I'm not sure about currently, but in the past they bred the sulcatas in great numbers and sold the babies to Japan. Plus, if she's charging you $50 for a Russian tortoise, she's selling tortoises, and that's how they are paying for having the rescue. I doubt they're the "largest" rescue, however they do have one helluva large collection of turtles an tortoises! Both Gary and Ginger are very nice folks. They also keep my favorite kind of tortoise, the Manouria. Ginger contracts to the Department of Fish and Game to license the desert tortoises in Northern Calif. (CTTC chapters in Southern Calif. take care of the licensing down south). They almost always have animals for adoption. Our club took a tour up there several years ago and she gave a few of us some pretty nice-looking box turtles.
 

sheenaschlytter

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welcome I am pretty close to you. does the rescue have a web cite I would be interested in going there thanks
 

MrChadley

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5 Year Member
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May 9, 2010
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emysemys said:
Hi MrChadley:

First of all, welcome to the forum!! We're glad to have you become one of our nor-cal members!

Most of the turtles and tortoises at Gary and Ginger Wilfong's place (Bay Area Turtle & Tortoise Rescue) are animals in their own collection. I'm not sure about currently, but in the past they bred the sulcatas in great numbers and sold the babies to Japan. Plus, if she's charging you $50 for a Russian tortoise, she's selling tortoises, and that's how they are paying for having the rescue. I doubt they're the "largest" rescue, however they do have one helluva large collection of turtles an tortoises! Both Gary and Ginger are very nice folks. They also keep my favorite kind of tortoise, the Manouria. Ginger contracts to the Department of Fish and Game to license the desert tortoises in Northern Calif. (CTTC chapters in Southern Calif. take care of the licensing down south). They almost always have animals for adoption. Our club took a tour up there several years ago and she gave a few of us some pretty nice-looking box turtles.

I see. I guess the line between "adopting with fee" and "selling" is a fine one, but I thought the $50 I paid was considerably cheaper than the prices I saw them for in my area. I knew about the licensing thing with the Desert Tortoise, but I don't have a yard to speak of, so I couldn't really go that route.

Thanks for the info.

sheenaschlytter said:
welcome I am pretty close to you. does the rescue have a web cite I would be interested in going there thanks

No web site, but number I found online was 510-886-2946. They only let people visit one or two days a week, and even then only for a few hours.

What city are you in?
 
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