Hibernating Tortoise Is Stirring

MaNaAk

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Hello Everyone,

Anyone else got a hibernating tortoise who is stirring? This is my first year of hibernating Jacky indoors.

MaNaAk
 

Tom

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Hello Everyone,

Anyone else got a hibernating tortoise who is stirring? This is my first year of hibernating Jacky indoors.

MaNaAk
What is the temperature where the tortoise is brumating? What sort of container and substrate did you use? Is it dark and quiet where the hibernacula is?
 

MaNaAk

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What is the temperature where the tortoise is brumating? What sort of container and substrate did you use? Is it dark and quiet where the hibernacula is?
Actually she is in the pet carrier in the bathroom but she just turned around. I had the hoover on so this may have woken her. I shall have to be more careful. It is the darkest coldest room in the flat.

MaNaAk

PS: The substrate is polystyrene which we have used for years.
 

Tom

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Actually she is in the pet carrier in the bathroom but she just turned around. I had the hoover on so this may have woken her. I shall have to be more careful. It is the darkest coldest room in the flat.

MaNaAk

PS: The substrate is polystyrene which we have used for years.
What is the temperature there where the tortoise is in its polystyrene carrier?
 

MaNaAk

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What is the temperature there where the tortoise is in its polystyrene carrier?
What is the temperature there where the tortoise is in its polystyrene carrier?
I've just put my late dad's Age UK thermometer in the bathroom and the reading is going down. It has been mild in this part of the UK so the answer is to remove some of the polystyrene. Actually she hasn't tried to get out but she just stirred (probably the tortoise equivalent of us turning over). In my old house when w we hibernated Jacky and Daisy outside they used to dig themselves in further.

MaNaAk
 

MaNaAk

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Good morning everyone

The thermometer has shown that it went down to 15 degrees last night but being in a one bedroom ground floor flat I can't leave the window open at night so I have removed some of the polystyrene and I will have the window open during the day time. Also the temperature is dropping next week.

MaNaAk
 

Tom

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Good morning everyone

The thermometer has shown that it went down to 15 degrees last night but being in a one bedroom ground floor flat I can't leave the window open at night so I have removed some of the polystyrene and I will have the window open during the day time. Also the temperature is dropping next week.

MaNaAk
15C is much too warm. That is just a normal night temp for them. To get the tortoise brumating it needs to be around 4C. Any warmer than that and the tortoise is just going to be too restless and burn through its energy reserves.

Can you post of pic of what the tortoise is in?
 

MaNaAk

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Good morning,

I can't really post a picture as the pet carrier is in the bathroom but I kept the window open during the day and it was much cooler (she didn't stir yesterday). The weather is set to turn colder again.

MaNaAk
 

Tabby0318

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Hi, my Tabby is awake aswell. She is in a box in the garage and temps have been 12deg past couple of days. She has been climbing to get out today, so I have had to put her in the garden under her tub. It us going to be mild again tomo, but hopefully Sunday it will start getting colder.
 

camerart

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Hi,
Mine is also 'up'.
She is outside on a soil mound surrounded by mouse proof stone, so cave like.

It's 12° here today, so I can see that it's too warm.

She is inside a stockade of bricks, but has stayed in her 'cave' which is dark.

I don't think I can do much, and suppose she will dig herself down, when it cools down again.
Camerart.
 

MaNaAk

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I've taken a photo after all so of course the light is on. I don't think I should feed Jacky as the temperatures are set to plummet again but how about giving her a bath? IMG20211231154756
 

Tom

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Hi, my Tabby is awake aswell. She is in a box in the garage and temps have been 12deg past couple of days. She has been climbing to get out today, so I have had to put her in the garden under her tub. It us going to be mild again tomo, but hopefully Sunday it will start getting colder.
Hi,
Mine is also 'up'.
She is outside on a soil mound surrounded by mouse proof stone, so cave like.

It's 12° here today, so I can see that it's too warm.

She is inside a stockade of bricks, but has stayed in her 'cave' which is dark.

I don't think I can do much, and suppose she will dig herself down, when it cools down again.
Camerart.
These are examples of how reptiles die during brumation. Leaving them outside subject to the whims of Mother Nature only works if you get lucky year after year. Many people do it. I did it too, but it will catch up to you one day and your tortoise will die. Then people go on to say that "hibernation is risky", when brumation is not risky or dangerous at all when done correctly.

Many times an outdoor animal will dig in properly in fall to prepare for its winter slumber. When there is an unusual (or usual in some cases) warm spell, some of those animals will dig up and walk around or bask as if its spring time. Then, when the warm spell ends and the normal freezing winter weather returns, they don't dig back in properly and you eventually find them dead.

If you don't have a constant cold place for them and ways to protect them from rodents, dogs, coyotes, rain/flooding, unusually cold temps, and all of the other things that will kill them outdoors, get a cheap fridge, a couple of thermometers, and bring them inside.
 

MaNaAk

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Mine is indoors though but I took her outside whilst she is awake. I don't really have space for another fridge but they forecast colder weather anyway. I will phone the reptile shop tomorrow but otherwise I will monitor. When my tortoises come out of hibernation they generally start eating a week later.

MaNaAk
 

MaNaAk

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I'm pleased to see that I am not the only one with waking tortoises as they are so dear to me. Seventy-one years and there have been times when they have got up early but then gone back into hibernation.

MaNaAk
 

Tabby0318

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These are examples of how reptiles die during brumation. Leaving them outside subject to the whims of Mother Nature only works if you get lucky year after year. Many people do it. I did it too, but it will catch up to you one day and your tortoise will die. Then people go on to say that "hibernation is risky", when brumation is not risky or dangerous at all when done correctly.

Many times an outdoor animal will dig in properly in fall to prepare for its winter slumber. When there is an unusual (or usual in some cases) warm spell, some of those animals will dig up and walk around or bask as if its spring time. Then, when the warm spell ends and the normal freezing winter weather returns, they don't dig back in properly and you eventually find them dead.

If you don't have a constant cold place for them and ways to protect them from rodents, dogs, coyotes, rain/flooding, unusually cold temps, and all of the other things that will kill them outdoors, get a cheap fridge, a couple of thermometers, and bring them inside.
I don't leave Tabby out at night even in the summer. For hibernation she has a large box with a smaller box inside with a gap between for insulation, it is on wheels so it is off the ground, so she is protected from rodents etc. It is in the garage and I have a temperature gauge and camera so I constantly check the temps don't get too cold. She was only in the garden during the day and she just put her head in and went back to sleep.
 

Tabby0318

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Could I see a pic of Tabby please. How old is she ?

MaNaAk
Hi, we think she is about 80yrs old. My partners dad had her for about 10+ yrs and we got her when he passed away.

Pic attached of Tabby stealing my cushion lol, she loves to sit with me in the garden in the summer.
 

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