Having a Greek Tortoise In South Korea

Joined
May 14, 2024
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Hello,

I got an 8 months Golden Greek Tortoise from a fish shop in Korea.

The owner said we can just give it chicory.

Doing research I saw that giving only chicory is not good. And I should vary it's diet.

Unfortunately there are many food I cannot find here (endives, escarole, raddichio) ...

I found kale (but it looks different than in pictures (not curly), I found chicory, romaine lettuce and a mix salad which has some romaine, raddichio and other stuffs)
I can find few dandelions on the road.
And I am thinking brining the tortoise outside for an afternoon walk during sunny weekends to enjoy sun and eat grass. (Would that be healthy? Would the tortoise know which flowers to eat)

Do someone has experience in South Korea and tell me what kind of food I can give the tortoise. I want to try to make it have a varied menu so because I will give Kale once a week, I dont know if I can give another brassica family food.

Thank you
 

wellington

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Hello and Welcome. The other foods you said you could find, you can add to the diet. Be sure any plants, weeds, dandelions etc that you collect is free of pesticides
Can you order mazuri or any other type of tortoise pellets? If so, add that to.
When taking him outside, be sure to have an enclosed for him to wonder in. Just watching him won't do as so many get lost that way. Just a second looking away and they disappear.
Give this a look thru and see if you can find any of the safe plants in your area. https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/
 
Joined
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Hello and Welcome. The other foods you said you could find, you can add to the diet. Be sure any plants, weeds, dandelions etc that you collect is free of pesticides
Can you order mazuri or any other type of tortoise pellets? If so, add that to.
When taking him outside, be sure to have an enclosed for him to wonder in. Just watching him won't do as so many get lost that way. Just a second looking away and they disappear.
Give this a look thru and see if you can find any of the safe plants in your area. https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/
Thank you for your answer.
I used this website. But it seems many lettuces I can find here are to use only a little. Even chicory I think was advised to not used too much.
I will buy the mazuri. The shop owner gave me some pellet food but it seems the tortoise doesn't eat them. I always give 2/3 each day inside it's dish, but I find them again in the evening .

I will try to find an enclosure. For outside.
My boyfriend's aunt has a farm in Korea and has some many different kind of leaves. But many I don't know what they are so I dont know if they are safe go give. Minami, tatsoi..
They don't know escarole, endive, raddichio...

I tried to make a menu like
Monday: kale, romaine lettuce
Tuesday : chicory /red lettuce
Wednesday: mix salad
Thursday chicory / red lettuce
Friday: mix salad
Saturday and Sunday eat outside I the park if sunny or some of the things from the week.

Would that be okay? I feel it will always eat the same things.
 

wellington

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You do need to try and find more to feed
As for the pellets,soak them until soft and mushy and smear them on the greens. You can feed the pellet food twice a week along with some greens. can you get arugula? Add that if you can get it.
 
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You do need to try and find more to feed
As for the pellets,soak them until soft and mushy and smear them on the greens. You can feed the pellet food twice a week along with some greens. can you get arugula? Add that if you can get it.
I think there is Arugula! I will try to find and add it. Thank you

For info here are some leefy greens sold in my local supermarket
(Ssam vegetables are vegetables used to wrap meet in korean BBQ there are "ssam mixes" which are mix lettuce, cabbage and perrilla leaves I think)

Thank you so much
 

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Joined
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Messages
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Location (City and/or State)
South Korea
You do need to try and find more to feed
As for the pellets,soak them until soft and mushy and smear them on the greens. You can feed the pellet food twice a week along with some greens. can you get arugula? Add that if you can get it.
Oh is arugula the same as rocket leaves?
I didn't get those because I saw it is Brassica and I avoided them.

If I give those to my tortoise, how much should I give?
And then should I stop giving Kale? Should I replace the Kale by the arugula?
Or maybe do one Monday Kale and the next Monday Arugula?
 

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Alex and the Redfoot

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Oh is arugula the same as rocket leaves?
I didn't get those because I saw it is Brassica and I avoided them.

If I give those to my tortoise, how much should I give?
And then should I stop giving Kale? Should I replace the Kale by the arugula?
Or maybe do one Monday Kale and the next Monday Arugula?
Hello!
Yes, arugula, rocket and ruccola are the same. You may add it on some days for variety instead of kale.

Maybe you can list some local plants sold in shops? There are many foods missing from The Tortoise Table but good for tortoises like drumstick (moringa) leaves.

Also can you get Hikari Mulberrific pellets in a pet shop as an alternative to Mazuri? (not as a replacement but just for variety)
 
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Hello!
Yes, arugula, rocket and ruccola are the same. You may add it on some days for variety instead of kale.

Maybe you can list some local plants sold in shops? There are many foods missing from The Tortoise Table but good for tortoises like drumstick (moringa) leaves.

Also can you get Hikari Mulberrific pellets in a pet shop as an alternative to Mazuri? (not as a replacement but just for variety)
I would like to do the list but if it is not in the tortoise table how can I know it is good for tortoises?
Should I ask here?
 

Alex and the Redfoot

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I would like to do the list but if it is not in the tortoise table how can I know it is good for tortoises?
Should I ask here?
Yes, of course, you can ask here!

There are a few basics to choose the right greens:
1. Toxicity - generally, if it is safe for human consumption then it's safe for a tortoise.
2. Calcium to Phosphorus ratio (can be found on many "healthy foods" sites or in food lists compiled for other animals like hamsters).
3. Sugar, protein and fiber content. For herbivorous tortoises you want plants low on sugar and protein and high in fiber.
4. Oxalates - foods high in oxalates have less useful calcium and that's all, it simply affects Calcium to Phosphorus ratio. Any warnings about raphides and oxalates crystalls can be mostly ignored.
 
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Hi,
On the way home I tried to identify plants using the plantNet app.
One of the plants I found was Coreopsis. On Tortoise Table it seems to be safe so I brought some flowers and leaves home.
Tortoise seems to enjoy the flower. Not sure about the leaves yet.
 

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Alex and the Redfoot

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Great finding! (I'm bad at plant IDing, so can't say if it's really a Coreopsis).

Just a word of warning about gathering plants - sometimes in public places (like parks) they can be treated with pesticides. You can ask the park management or municipality if they use something like this.
 
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Yeah I was worried about this because I want to bring it to the park tomorrow.
I should see.

For the flower I'm not sure if it was public place.. it was on the road outside the university. But some plants looked like they could have been planted there.. I saw some insect on it though 🙄

I was also worried about the ID. I checked 2 times with the app, and looked o line for pictures to see if it looked the same.

For pesticides I guess I would have to find a forest maybe...
 

Alex and the Redfoot

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Yeah I was worried about this because I want to bring it to the park tomorrow.
I should see.

For the flower I'm not sure if it was public place.. it was on the road outside the university. But some plants looked like they could have been planted there.. I saw some insect on it though 🙄

I was also worried about the ID. I checked 2 times with the app, and looked o line for pictures to see if it looked the same.

For pesticides I guess I would have to find a forest maybe...
You can also try another app, like Flora Incognita to double check. We also have a section on the forum called "Plant Identification" specially for questions on plant ID/safety.

One of the safest options is to grow your own plants (there are special tortoise seed mixes) to supplement grocery store greens.
 

jaizei

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Hello,

I got an 8 months Golden Greek Tortoise from a fish shop in Korea.

The owner said we can just give it chicory.

Doing research I saw that giving only chicory is not good. And I should vary it's diet.

Unfortunately there are many food I cannot find here (endives, escarole, raddichio) ...

I found kale (but it looks different than in pictures (not curly), I found chicory, romaine lettuce and a mix salad which has some romaine, raddichio and other stuffs)
I can find few dandelions on the road.
And I am thinking brining the tortoise outside for an afternoon walk during sunny weekends to enjoy sun and eat grass. (Would that be healthy? Would the tortoise know which flowers to eat)

Do someone has experience in South Korea and tell me what kind of food I can give the tortoise. I want to try to make it have a varied menu so because I will give Kale once a week, I dont know if I can give another brassica family food.

Thank you

Many places lump collard greens in with kale, whereas in USA collards greens are separate. The 'kale' in your picture might be considered collard greens in the US. If you see someone reference collard greens on the forum, thats what it is.
 
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Many places lump collard greens in with kale, whereas in USA collards greens are separate. The 'kale' in your picture might be considered collard greens in the US. If you see someone reference collard greens on the forum, thats what it is.
Oh I see. Thank you. Makes sense
 

RosemaryDW

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Welcome!

I wouldn't get too worried about not being able to match foods to any lists you see here; these are lists for North America and the UK; you're doing your tortoise a disservice if you look for only foods commonly mentioned here.

Fortunately many Asian countries are more open minded about eating foods that are great for tortoises we'd never consider here. So you might be better off than some of our owners once you learn what's around you.

I know it's not East Asia but you may find some available foods in this thread: https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/s...cambodia-thailand-malay-indo-etc-diet.165957/. And if you read through this (long) thread you'll find two posts I made about foods I've purchased from a Korean grocery store. Just dropped by a Korean grocery store today, in fact! You'll also see plenty of posts from me visiting my farmers market, which sells to many Asian and Indian customers; always something new to try: https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/the-tortoise-chef.153728/.
 
Joined
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Location (City and/or State)
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You can also try another app, like Flora Incognita to double check. We also have a section on the forum called "Plant Identification" specially for questions on plant ID/safety.

One of the safest options is to grow your own plants (there are special tortoise seed mixes) to supplement grocery store greens.
Hi sorry for my many questions.
But I just came back home from going to a cafe for 2 hours ( it is 12pm here and I changed my tortoise water this morning around 8am)
And now the water is completely yellow which makes me worried.
Is it normal.
I am thinking maybe it could be because she ate yellow flowers yesterday?

I posted a picture to show

She is in it now so I cannot change the water yet. But I am thinking bringing her outside now for walk and sushine
 

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Joined
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Messages
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Location (City and/or State)
South Korea
Welcome!

I wouldn't get too worried about not being able to match foods to any lists you see here; these are lists for North America and the UK; you're doing your tortoise a disservice if you look for only foods commonly mentioned here.

Fortunately many Asian countries are more open minded about eating foods that are great for tortoises we'd never consider here. So you might be better off than some of our owners once you learn what's around you.

I know it's not East Asia but you may find some available foods in this thread: https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/s...cambodia-thailand-malay-indo-etc-diet.165957/. And if you read through this (long) thread you'll find two posts I made about foods I've purchased from a Korean grocery store. Just dropped by a Korean grocery store today, in fact! You'll also see plenty of posts from me visiting my farmers market, which sells to many Asian and Indian customers; always something new to try: https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/the-tortoise-chef.153728/.
Thank you very much.
I will definitely have a look.
 
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