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Jack @ Trinas first Sulcata Tortoise

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Active Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2019
Messages
179
Location (City and/or State)
Valley Springs, Ca.
So I can tell Skittles is getting bigger so I weighted him again today....176G....17g in 2 days. I bought some Mazuri a couple of weeks ago and feed it a few times a week. Do you think that is making him grow?.....He averaged 1/2 g a day forever but now 17g in 2 days....crazy.
Jack
 

Markw84

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
3,436
Location (City and/or State)
Sacramento, CA (Central Valley)
Up to 10% variation in weight can occur with dumping water and pooping. So I try to weigh at the same time in the bathing schedule - later in bath. Tortoises do grow fast at the size of yours to take advantage of good conditions. A 25% weight gain in a month can be common, with spurts of even more. My 7 month old Galapagos at 253g last month, gained 140g in exactly one month.

I believe baby tortoises hatch needing much more development in order to survive. Gaining size quickly when conditions allow is not only helping them get more predator proof, but more importantly giving them the metabolic activity they need to continue to develop. Organs are still developing their metabolic capacity. An almost totally cartilage skeleton is ossifying. Size also allows them to start to handle and endure drier conditions they will later be exposed to. This all takes great metabolic activity. IF conditions do not allow this, I do not believe a young tortoise develops properly. Rather than "faster than normal growth" I believe instead we should think tortoises have developed the ability for "much slower than normal growth". That allows them to wait out unfavorable conditions and survive when many animals could not. But at the wrong time, that slower growth can be damaging and even fatal.

... How's that for something to spark conversation!
 
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