Is a 42.5 sq ft outdoor enclosure big enough for two Russians

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Torts4Life!

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I'm building a new outdoor enclosure for my Russians this spring and was just wondering if 42.5 sq ft was big enough for 2 RT? I should include that i was thinking the total enclosure will be 68 sq ft but 25.5 sq ft was going to be for my little Greek tort. Do you think that is okay too?? Thanks I'd appreciate any advice :)
 

Spn785

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From my experience (which is limited) there is no such thing as big enough for Russians. My friend's Russian thought a third of an acre wasn't big enough. LOL. Actually, I think that size should be just fine, but just be sure to watch for new agressive behaviours from your male. With the change in enclosure and increase in space, that can mean a change in attitude toward each other.
 

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The more you can pack it with plants the better. Grow lots of grass and weeds. Don't forget to include some big rocks and logs for sight barriers.
 

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So about 5x8'? That's on the small side, but better than nothing.

No enclosure is the correct size for TWO Russians. Two Russians of any sex should not be housed together. They fight. They are scrappy. Males harass females constantly. If you want more than one you'll need at least two females and just one male. This gives you the greatest chance at some harmony, but be prepared to separate all of them into their own enclosures in the event of combat, which is likely.
 

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What do you think would be better? 5x8 or 3x13? I'd almost think 3x13 would be better for two, so they can get further away from each other.
 

Torts4Life!

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I have a male and female but from the years I've had them together I've never seen any aggression from either of them! I do understand that it could change at anytime and I'm prepared for it but I truly believe they like being together, they do everything together like eat, sleep, explore... they never let the other one out of their sight! I think I have an extremely rare case of Russian behavior.

Yea it's going to be about 5'X8' if its okay with some mulch, a mixture weeds, and a small rose bush with logs and rocks and a shelter extending from one side. And the same for my little greek tort just 3'X8'.
 

WillTort2

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I have an idea and a question regarding shape and distribution of space between your tort species.

Would it work to have the russians area surrounding the Greek area as in a rectangle within a rectangle? My thought is that this would give maximum separation between the two russians and allow them to roam around the racetrack like enclosure.
 

jjsull33

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Torts4Life! said:
I have a male and female but from the years I've had them together I've never seen any aggression from either of them! I do understand that it could change at anytime and I'm prepared for it but I truly believe they like being together, they do everything together like eat, sleep, explore... they never let the other one out of their sight! I think I have an extremely rare case of Russian behavior.

Yea it's going to be about 5'X8' if its okay with some mulch, a mixture weeds, and a small rose bush with logs and rocks and a shelter extending from one side. And the same for my little greek tort just 3'X8'.

My Russians were the exact same way, almost like a mated pair for 11 years then just one day he decided all the food was his and she was no longer welcome to eat, she was there for one purpose only in his eyes...

Now they live alone, if it's still working for you that's awesome just keep any eye on them so he doesn't end up hurting her.
 

Torts4Life!

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jjsull33 said:
Torts4Life! said:
I have a male and female but from the years I've had them together I've never seen any aggression from either of them! I do understand that it could change at anytime and I'm prepared for it but I truly believe they like being together, they do everything together like eat, sleep, explore... they never let the other one out of their sight! I think I have an extremely rare case of Russian behavior.

Yea it's going to be about 5'X8' if its okay with some mulch, a mixture weeds, and a small rose bush with logs and rocks and a shelter extending from one side. And the same for my little greek tort just 3'X8'.

My Russians were the exact same way, almost like a mated pair for 11 years then just one day he decided all the food was his and she was no longer welcome to eat, she was there for one purpose only in his eyes...

Now they live alone, if it's still working for you that's awesome just keep any eye on them so he doesn't end up hurting her.

Will Do! I would hate for it to happen but it might and I understand that, Thanks for your concern :)
 

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42 sq. ft. - something like 6' x 7' - is a great enclosure for one Russian. I wouldn't put two in there. If it's two males, one will beat up the other. If it's two females, one will still hyperdominate and stress out the subordinate. And if it's a male and female, the male will court the female incessantly, also to the point of injury or illness.

As mentioned above, two is not really a good number, because one bullies the other. Living alone is best, but if you're going to give them roommates, it's better to dilute the aggression with three to five females, and keep the male separate and alone. You can give the male access to the females when it's time to breed.
 

Torts4Life!

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WillTortoise said:
I have an idea and a question regarding shape and distribution of space between your tort species.

Would it work to have the russians area surrounding the Greek area as in a rectangle within a rectangle? My thought is that this would give maximum separation between the two russians and allow them to roam around the racetrack like enclosure.

That sounds like an awesome enclosure. We just finished building before I read your post but if it doesn't work out and the Russians need more space between them I think I'll give your idea a shot. It was an easy build so I can easily fix it if need be! Thanks :)


JUST FINISHED!!! I'm waiting for the next snow storm to pass to plant grass, weeds, flowers, and many succulents!! What do you think??

All three checkin it out :) P4065206.JPG
Uncovered P4065208.JPG
Covered to keep predators out P4065210.JPG
 
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jjsull33

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Torts4Life! said:
JUST FINISHED!!! I'm waiting for the next snow storm to pass to plant grass, weeds, flowers, and many succulents!! What do you think??

I am waiting for the same storm to pass for the same reason.... this getting to 65-70 for a few days then it snowing for a few days over and over is getting a bit old lol

It looks great, can't wait to see what it looks like planted.
 

BeeBee*BeeLeaves

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Nice! If it does seem that the Russians need to go to separate areas you could build a third area with WillTortoise's racetrack idea around this one and put the male out there. Looks great and its a good thing you know to keep an eye on the two buddies just in case Russian roulette happens. Kinda cool to hear that they are pals right now, odd, but way cool. : )
 

Yvonne G

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I think you would do better with a more "fixed" cover. I don't see how you can easily lift that cover to tend to the tortoises.
 

Torts4Life!

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jjsull33 said:
Torts4Life! said:
JUST FINISHED!!! I'm waiting for the next snow storm to pass to plant grass, weeds, flowers, and many succulents!! What do you think??

I am waiting for the same storm to pass for the same reason.... this getting to 65-70 for a few days then it snowing for a few days over and over is getting a bit old lol

It looks great, can't wait to see what it looks like planted.

This weather is getting way old lol stay warm, I heard it's suppose to be over a 12 inch storm coming through :(


emysemys said:
I think you would do better with a more "fixed" cover. I don't see how you can easily lift that cover to tend to the tortoises.

I do completely agree with you! It takes quite a bit of time unhooking all of the areas. Do you have any ideas??


BeeBee*BeeLeaves said:
Nice! If it does seem that the Russians need to go to separate areas you could build a third area with WillTortoise's racetrack idea around this one and put the male out there. Looks great and its a good thing you know to keep an eye on the two buddies just in case Russian roulette happens. Kinda cool to hear that they are pals right now, odd, but way cool. : )

Yea I was thinking of doing the racetrack thing if it doesn't work out with my Russians, ( I love that you called it "Russian Roulette") lol I'm definitely enjoying my time while they're still buddies, I have great pictures of the two of them!! :)
 

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BeeBee*BeeLeaves said:
If it does seem that the Russians need to go to separate areas you could build a third area with WillTortoise's racetrack idea around this one and put the male out there.

racetrack idea? i'm curious.... have a link to more details?
 

Torts4Life!

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Team Gomberg said:
BeeBee*BeeLeaves said:
If it does seem that the Russians need to go to separate areas you could build a third area with WillTortoise's racetrack idea around this one and put the male out there.

racetrack idea? i'm curious.... have a link to more details?

No I don't, it was an idea WillTortoise's had that instead of dividing the enclosure with a single plank of wood, doing a square within a square type of enclosure. The small square would sit inside the bigger square giving it a "racetrack" look since my Russians might become more territorial over time, to give them their "own" space.
 
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