Is this normal behavior?

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Marty333

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I have had Nova since 1/2/11 and I never ever see her wandering her enclosure. When I first got her she was curious but now all she does is sleep under her log. I can see her in the log and even if she's awake she is still under the log. I always soak her and when Im done soaking her I feed her outside of her enclosure and she eats all the food and poops every few days. Is it normal for her to be inactive. I have an MVB and right under it it is about 83F and where her house is it is 75F. She always has fresh food and water in her enclosure but never goes and eats it. When she is out she is like a race car exploring everything! Her substrate is cypress mulch with frog moss and the humidity is 75%. I plan to move her outside in the spring so right now she is in a 40 gallon tank until the cold weather goes away. Any thoughts?
 

jeffbens0n

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She might just be bored, you could try adding more things to explore. Plants, rocks to climb on? I dunno just an idea maybe others will have other thoughts.
 

Madkins007

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The temps sound cool to me. Can you safely boost them?
 

matt41gb

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Hiding for many hours of the day is perfectly normal behavior. Make sure that Nova isn't showing any signs of illness that could cause her to be hiding so much. They feel very safe and secure when they are under something, or when the environment is touching them. All of my adults will come out to eat and then go right to their hides. I rarely see them come back out.

-Matt
 

Redfoot NERD

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Yeah.. use the CHE to raise the temps to low to mid. 80's min. thru-out and they rarely bask other than to thermo-regulate and that hasn't been my observation very often [ once the ambient temps are met ].. and it sounds like entirely too much light which may be why he's not out much. Once they start eating regularly they usually come out of their hide to eat.. and then they do go back to their hide!

Other than to keep him hydrated.. is there a reason to 'force-soak' him? Provide a water dish that they can easily get in and out of and they will be fine. I happen to believe the less they are handled the less the stress and the less the stress the happier and healthier they are!

Boredom has nothing to do with the activity of a redfoot.. provide as much 'wide-open' space as possible and a place to hide that's warm and humid and they're happy.

Again I suspect too much light is keeping him hidden.

Can we see a few pics of his enclosure and an idea of his actual SCL?

NERD
 

wildponey21

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I have the same problem with two red foots. I oder a che heater 3 weeks ago and it still has not showed up. Mine don't even want to eat even afther a soak. They are health and not sick took them with my to work and a vet look at them.
 

Redfoot NERD

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wildponey21 said:
I have the same problem with two red foots. I oder a che heater 3 weeks ago and it still has not showed up. Mine don't even want to eat even afther a soak. They are health and not sick took them with my to work and a vet look at them.

You don't have a problem ...poney.. you have redfoot tortoises!

NERD



Marty333 said:
I will get some pics up Terry She is 6 inches long and I have a water dish but I never se her soak in it. Is there a way I can filter the light to make it more dark?

6" is at least 3-4 YEARS old.. and you don't watch him 24/7.

Get that "BEACON" out of there and he will act like he should - not only is he stressed from all of that light.. but from you handling him so often.. [ force-soaking ] - we still love you Marty333..
36_2_35.gif
 

Madkins007

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Marty333 said:
Okay there is no way I can atleast filter the light to make it look like it would on the forest floor? Doesnt he need UVB? And Yes! Im still loved!! LOL

Terry/NERD believes in raising his tortoises in low light indoors, and that works for him but it is not a universally accepted method. The low-light idea is based on a theory that Red-foots are mostly a deep-forest animal, but most of them come from more open places outside of the rain forest. Most experienced keepers I have talked to have no problems with 'regular light' for Red-foots, and I have not seen any problems in my group.

It is certainly possible to dump too much light in a habitat, and if you think that is the case, you can change the bulbs (remove them, move then further away, etc.) or you can just offer more shade- even a piece of foil can block a lot of the light when you use it like an awning or something.

The UVB light is important unless the tortoise has access to sunlight strong enough to give you a tan, unfiltered by most glass or plastics, for a couple hours a week over several short sessions.

Tortoises store excess vitamin D in their fat, and a healthy outdoor tortoise can store enough to help them for several months when it is time to go back indoors if they need to, but it does seem helpful to offer a decent amount of UVB all year- not just for vitamin D production, but for proper vision, deep brain gland development and stimulation, etc.

They do OK without it, but they seem to do better with it.
 

LindaF

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Marty, I followed Terry K's advice about the light and it totally changed my RFs behavior. I would always have to bring him out of his hide to eat, but once I lost the bright light and use the CHE and infrared bulb for heat he comes out on his own to eat and will self soak. Since he likes to hide I gave him 4 hides to choose from. After eating he spends time going from hide to hide checking them out before he makes his choice for the day. He usually peeps out of his hides always watching in hopes I will give him more food.:)
It was hard but I even learned to follow Terry's advice about not handling the RF either. It made him less shy in the long run as well. He now does not have to fear the giant crazy lady picking him up.
 

heyprettyrave

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try the daylight blue reptile bubls 150 watts, theyre amazing. they are very cheap too and theyre not as bright as some of the others
 

tortoisenerd

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Is she roaming the house when you say "out"? If so, I'd suggest stopping this, as letting a tort into a large space and then penning them up again can frustrate them, as they want that space. Its also dangerous due to temps, dust, hair, etc. Another issue is the behavior of running around like crazy can be them just trying to find a place to run and hide. Besides the more redfoot-specific advice you were given, if you are letting her out in the house, I'd stop. Make a larger indoor enclosure for the cooler months if needed, to allow enough space for full time, and enough space to allow for cage furnishings that give her stuff to do. Even for a healthy inactive tort, I still would want to see the tort eating and moving around a bit per day...if it were me, I'd place the tort in front of the food daily if it doesn't go on its own, and ensure it can warm up enough to want to eat. A lot of times they just slow down a bit in winter, but you do need to ensure nothing else is going on first. Good luck!
 
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