How I researched to establish caresheet..

Redfoot NERD

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[ the following is from a request of Anyfoot.. to aid those new to this hobby or anyone who admits or realizes that the way they have been informed and now practicing is not getting the results they can ( and should ) have. ] Other than specific questions { thru contact in website ] and maybe pics.. this is all I need to say about redfoot tortoises.

When someone says that they get good results using "their" techniques.. most often they have changed the balance of the "basic" parameters.. which always overall will influence the growth and appearance of their redfoot tortoise. They are Temperature.. Humidity.. Lighting and Diet
Everything else falls under those 4.

I learned this personally early on - 1990's - since there was little info available.. and what was available was prescribed for mainly the "open-range" African and European herbivorous tortoises.

So all the "scientific- researched- authors" were relying on limited or 'second-hand' info.. which even now have found errors in their claims and publications!

My early hatchlings looked like pineapples before year two and quite pyramided by 3 or 4! Something needed to change .. and now!

Almost EVERYONE of the 4 basic parameters were the exact opposite of what was being stated.. of how to keep and maintain redfoot tortoises!

HOW TO RESEARCH .. once you know what species you have we need to know where and how they thrive "in the wild" - that's easy and can be done with a map - check temps.. humidity and/or continent, etc. - http://internationalweather.net/?gclid=CjwKEAiAuea1BRCbn-2n7PbLgEMSJAABQvTTNf7uyFb not sure why these links don't work.. will amend ASAP!

South America - http://internationalweather.net/local/region/sa.html - this tells us the Temps / Humidity they require.

The overall best READ is here.. explaining the major "climate" of all the different regions -
http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y1997e/y1997e1c.htm#TopOfPage

So I took this info.. realizing that the redfoots from "North of the Amazon" needed a lot of humidity and moderate temps and light! When I made those changes it was amazing how the new hatchlings were developing compared to their siblings and cousins.

Tests of time .. the first hatchlings from 1998 created their FIRST hatchlings at 6 years 4 months - Feb. 2005. A second generation hatchling ( hatched in July 2005 ) created hatchlings in Feb. 2012 - at 6 years 7 months.. raised by the SAME Caresheet!

This and the link(s) above are the Caresheet that also created the hatchling on the cover of REPTILES magazine - see in link below.

Turtletary.com website - http://turtletary.com/northern.html

Can provide pics dating back to 2004 .. as requested - be specific with request or use contact form in site.
 
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Redfoot NERD

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Anyfoot

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[ the following is from a request of Anyfoot.. to aid those new to this hobby or anyone who admits or realizes that the way they have been informed and now practicing is not getting the results they can ( and should ) have. ] Other than specific questions { thru contact in website ] and maybe pics.. this is all I need to say about redfoot tortoises.

When someone says that they get good results using "their" techniques.. most often they have changed the balance of the "basic" parameters.. which always overall will influence the growth and appearance of their redfoot tortoise. They are Temperature.. Humidity.. Lighting and Diet
Everything else falls under those 4.

I learned this personally early on - 1990's - since there was little info available.. and what was available was prescribed for mainly the "open-range" African and European herbivorous tortoises.

So all the "scientific- researched- authors" were relying on limited or 'second-hand' info.. which even now have found errors in their claims and publications!

My early hatchlings looked like pineapples before year two and quite pyramided by 3 or 4! Something needed to change .. and now!

Almost EVERYONE of the 4 basic parameters were the exact opposite of what was being stated.. of how to keep and maintain redfoot tortoises!

HOW TO RESEARCH .. once you know what species you have we need to know where and how they thrive "in the wild" - that's easy and can be done with a map - check temps.. humidity and/or continent, etc. - http://internationalweather.net/?gclid=CjwKEAiAuea1BRCbn-2n7PbLgEMSJAABQvTTNf7uyFb not sure why these links don't work.. will amend ASAP!

South America - http://internationalweather.net/local/region/sa.html - this tells us the Temps / Humidity they require.

The overall best READ is here.. explaining the major "climate" of all the different regions -
http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y1997e/y1997e1c.htm#TopOfPage

So I took this info.. realizing that the redfoots from "North of the Amazon" needed a lot of humidity and moderate temps and light! When I made those changes it was amazing how the new hatchlings were developing compared to their siblings and cousins.

Tests of time .. the first hatchlings from 1998 created their FIRST hatchlings at 6 years 4 months - Feb. 2005. A second generation hatchling ( hatched in July 2005 ) created hatchlings in Feb. 2012 - at 6 years 7 months.. raised by the SAME Caresheet!

This and the link(s) above are the Caresheet that also created the hatchling on the cover of REPTILES magazine - see in link below.

Turtletary.com website - http://turtletary.com/northern.html

Can provide pics dating back to 2004 .. as requested - be specific with request or use contact form in site.

I asked Redfootnerd for this because we have no care sheet in the redfoot section.

Thank you. Now I have a direction to point redfoot keepers in who seek advice.
 

Turtlepete

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Terry, I think its worth mention that the climate data gathered in the region where our target species inhabits doesn't always reflect the parameters they are typically experiencing. For example, a species that occurs under triple canopy and spends most of its life in the leaf litter is going to be experiencing vastly different temperature and humidity levels then the station 100 miles away recorded. Microclimates cause a huge fluctuation, and a lot of species largely inhabit these microclimates.
 

Tom

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Terry, I think its worth mention that the climate data gathered in the region where our target species inhabits doesn't always reflect the parameters they are typically experiencing. For example, a species that occurs under triple canopy and spends most of its life in the leaf litter is going to be experiencing vastly different temperature and humidity levels then the station 100 miles away recorded. Microclimates cause a huge fluctuation, and a lot of species largely inhabit these microclimates.

How does this relate to Terry's care sheet? Are his temps too warm, too cool? Too humid, not humid enough? What changes or differences would you suggest?
 

Turtlepete

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HOW TO RESEARCH .. once you know what species you have we need to know where and how they thrive "in the wild" - that's easy and can be done with a map - check temps.. humidity and/or continent, etc. - http://internationalweather.net/?gclid=CjwKEAiAuea1BRCbn-2n7PbLgEMSJAABQvTTNf7uyFb not sure why these links don't work.. will amend ASAP!

South America - http://internationalweather.net/local/region/sa.html - this tells us the Temps / Humidity they require.

The overall best READ is here.. explaining the major "climate" of all the different regions -
http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y1997e/y1997e1c.htm#TopOfPage

Tom, that would be directed towards the above suggested method of collecting data on the parameters our reptiles are experiencing in the wild.

I wasn't aware the topic was that of a care sheet; more that of collecting information for a care sheet…?
 

Redfoot NERD

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This is the main source of creating caresheet - http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y1997e/y1997e1c.htm#TopOfPage

It starts with - "... The tropical South America subregion,[54] comprising Colombia, French Guiana, Suriname, Guyana, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay and Brazil, represents the greatest concentration of tropical rain forest in the world,

Tropical Rainforest region... where they live.
 

Redfoot NERD

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Asking someone else how they keep their tortoises - regardless the species - will at best tell you how they keep them! That didn't work for me... so I researched where and how they live in the wild and did my best to duplicate that.

A tropical Rain-forest [ Rose-of-Sharon ] .. for shade and humidity retention.. a vertical 2x4 with "wand" sprinkler on top to simulate rain.. with open perimeter for sunshine/thermo-regulating at daybreak.

 

Tom

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Terry, I think its worth mention that the climate data gathered in the region where our target species inhabits doesn't always reflect the parameters they are typically experiencing. For example, a species that occurs under triple canopy and spends most of its life in the leaf litter is going to be experiencing vastly different temperature and humidity levels then the station 100 miles away recorded. Microclimates cause a huge fluctuation, and a lot of species largely inhabit these microclimates.

Oh, I agree completely. I've certainly seen this point to the extreme with the species I keep, but I was wondering if you thought the data Terry was able to extrapolate from his sources led to a "correct" care sheet or not.

I don't have much experience with this species, but I like them and want to learn.
 

domalle

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Brazil is not just one large tropical rainforest. Like many other countries on the South American continent, it consists of many different environments including dry arid tropical and temperate climates inhabited by the Red-Footed tortoise, Chelonoidis carbonarius. The so-called Cherryhead Red-Footed
tortoise in particular hails from such dry and seasonally changing areas, as do the Chacoan Red-Foots from Bolivia and Paraguay.

-
 

Redfoot NERD

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Not sure what all this back and forth is about. It takes no experience to take exception about anything/everything. I didn't create the site http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y1997e/y1997e1c.htm#TopOfPage .. and none of you created a caresheet and published it for the world to see!

All the above "back and forth" looks good to a new keeper I'm sure!

About the research? Find out what and where the typical 4 basic parameters are for the species you keep... keep them balanced.. they make babies consistently.

MODERATOR PLEASE LOCK THIS THREAD PLEASE
 

Turtlepete

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Oh, I agree completely. I've certainly seen this point to the extreme with the species I keep, but I was wondering if you thought the data Terry was able to extrapolate from his sources led to a "correct" care sheet or not.

I don't have much experience with this species, but I like them and want to learn.

Nothing at all wrong with Terry's care sheet, its a decent care sheet and he certainly produces beautiful animals. I'm not arguing about the content of the care sheet.

I was simply referring to the methods by which Terry mentions learning about the climate where a species lives, and casually pointing out that the method can be misleading due to a variety of factors. Similar to how you advocate for keeping sulcatas moist; anyone who looked at climate data for the areas they occur would quickly assume they lived in a desert and keep them in a similar way, something that led to a lot of damaged animals. This method is unfortunately misleading and simply doesn't give us the answers we need.

Terry, the above "back and forth" is called intelligent discussion, something that is typically constructive. Honestly, I mentioned what I did quite simply for beginners who may look at such methods and use them themselves.

I don't see the reason to jump and want this thread closed instantly.
 

Tom

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Terry, the above "back and forth" is called intelligent discussion, something that is typically constructive. Honestly, I mentioned what I did quite simply for beginners who may look at such methods and use them themselves.

I don't see the reason to jump and want this thread closed instantly.

Agreed.
 

Redfoot NERD

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I didn't create this for discussion. This is "How to research...." . Where can there be discussion about that? I then created a caresheet that must have worked - 2nd generation hatchlings 7 years later.

All this "intelligent discussion" has been about what you find when you get there! That's off topic!

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO GET THIS LOCKED.. MODERATOR? PLEASE?
 
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SteveW

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I didn't create this for discussion. This is "How to research...." . Where can there be discussion about that? I then created a caresheet that must have worked - 2nd generation hatchlings 7 years later.

All this "intelligent discussion" has been about what you find when you get there! That's off topic!

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO GET THIS LOCKED.. MODERATOR? PLEASE?

I guess I'm still new, because the back and forth, intelligent discussion does in fact look good to me. Better, in fact, than your apparent ruffled feathers that anyone would dare question you, however indirectly.
Congratulations on your second generation, hatchlings,seven years later. They look fantastic. I don't think you will find that absolves you of ever being questioned or if being asked to defend your assertions.

As to the thread closing bit, profanity seems to work.
 

Turtlepete

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I didn't create this for discussion. This is "How to research...." . Where can there be discussion about that? I then created a caresheet that must have worked - 2nd generation hatchlings 7 years later.

All this "intelligent discussion" has been about what you find when you get there! That's off topic!

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO GET THIS LOCKED.. MODERATOR? PLEASE?

Terry, I don't mean to offend (although my original post was simple, friendly discussion that should have never led to any sort of conflict) but the purpose of this forum is discussion. Getting insulted because people question your methods or want to further discuss your topic is completely ridiculous; if you are so confident, you should have no trouble defending it! This forum is for discussion, not for the one-sided sharing of information.

Knowledge, my friend, is the result of people who were willing to defend their beliefs.
 

Redfoot NERD

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You're right Pete.. no offense here.. no longer interested in discussions.. and/or feel I need to defend anything anymore - that's all!

 

cdmay

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I agree that while investigating the weather parameters of the region where a certain species of tortoise occurs is of value, one must be cautious about making generalizations. As was pointed out already, the actual microhabitat of the animal in question (in this case red-footed tortoises) plays a huge role in what the temperatures and humidity that the animals are subjected to are really like.
For example, I live in south Florida and many people assume that this region is very warm and humid---which it is during much of the year. But since I live in coastal south Florida, less than a mile from the ocean, my soil is very sandy and dries quickly regardless of rainfall. We also get onshore ocean breezes that contribute to the drying effect. So in reality my yard is quite dry most of the time. But if I were to only follow what the local weathermen say, or what the recording stations miles and miles away report, I'd be sorely misinformed.

By doing some further research you will find that even in northern South America the countries of Colombia, Suriname, Guyana and northern Brazil are not solid canopied rainforest but in fact are made up of all kinds of habitats that even include mountains at least in the case of Colombia. Instead of solid rainforest these countries have habitat that include dry forest, dry thorn-scrub, coastal dry forests, seasonally flooded gallery forests, seasonally flooded rainforest and so on.

Of more value than just examining weather reporting stations (although again, this is of some value) is examining the literature produced by researchers who actually spend time on the ground, (as they say on the TV news all the time) where the tortoises are living. This will provide the keeper of more accurate conditions where they live.

Many of us would be shocked....(shocked! :eek:) to learn that red-footed tortoises prefer NOT to live in canopied rainforest but instead live along the forest edges, nearby savannas and seasonably dry forests. The general consensus is that they prefer these habitats because they allow the tortoises to bask in patches of, if not completely open, sunshine.
On the other hand, their sister species the yellow-foot tortoise, Chelonoidis denticulata do prefer the more shaded and humid rainforest. Although they too at times are found in more open habitats.

Here is some suggested reading:

Bjorndal, Karen A. (March 1989). "Flexibility of digestive responses in two generalist herbivores, the tortoises Geochelone carbonaria and Geochelone denticulata". Oecologia 78 (3): 317–321. doi:10.1007/bf00379104.

Moskovits, D. K. 1985. The behavior and ecology of the two Amazonian tortoises, Geochelone carbonaria and Geochelone denticulata, in northwestern Brasil. Ph.D. Dissertation. University of Chicago, IL.

Moskovits, D. K. and A. R. Kiester. 1987. Activity levels and ranging behaviour of the two Amazonian tortoises, Geochelone carbonaria and Geochelone denticulata, in northwestern Brazil. Functional Ecology, 1:203–214.

Moskovits, D. K. 1988. Sexual dimorphism and population estimates of the two Amazonian tortoises Geochelone carbonaria and G. denticulata in Northwestern Brazil. Herpetologica, 44:209–217.

A.J. Noss, R.R. Montaño F, F. Soria, S.L. Deem, C.V. Fiorello and L.A. Fitzgerald. (2013) Chelonoidis carbonaria (Testudines: Testudinidae) Activity Patterns and Burrow use in the Bolivian Chaco. South American Journal of Herpetology 8, 19-28.
Online publication date: 1-Apr-2013.

D. A. Pike and J. C. Mitchell. (2013) Burrow-dwelling ecosystem engineers provide thermal refugia throughout the landscape. Animal Conservation 16, 694-703.
Online publication date: 1-Dec-2013.

Pritchard, P. C. H. and P. Trebbau. 1984. The turtles of Venezuela. Contributions to Herpetology n° 2. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles. Athens, Ohio.

Strong, J. N. and J. M. V. Fragoso. 2006. Seed dispersal by Geochelone carbonaria and Geochelone denticulata in Northwestern Brazil. Biotropica, 38(5):683–686.

Vargas-Ramirez, Mario; Jerome Maran, Uwe Fritz (2010). "Red- and yellow-footed tortoises, Chelonoidis carbonaria and C. denticulata (Reptilia: Testudines: Testudinidae), in South American savannahs and forests: do their phylogeographies reflect distinct habitats?". Organisms, Diversity and Evolution.

Vinke, Thomas; Sabine Vinke (2003). "An Unusual Survival Strategy of the Red-footed Tortoise Geochelone carbonaria in the Chaco Boreal of Paraguay". Radiata (English edition) 12 (3): 21–31.

Ellen Wang, Camila I. Donatti, Vanda L. Ferreira, Josué Raizer and Jeffrey Himmelstein. (2011) Food Habits and Notes on the Biology of Chelonoidis carbonaria (Spix 1824) (Testudinidae, Chelonia) in the Southern Pantanal, Brazil. South American Journal of Herpetology 6, 11-19.
Online publication date: 1-Apr-2011.

And finally, nobody should be annoyed or insulted, feel threatened by, or in any other manner be 'ruffled' by the addition of knowledge.
The production of a good care sheet is a noble venture and should include all of the above information.
 
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