Miniature Sulcata?

casstom702

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
 

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Thomas tortoise

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The obvious question here - how were/are they housed? Together in one large enclosure….or separately?

These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
If they were housed together then the one will bully the other and eat more food than the other. That is the reason. If they were housed separately then you must have been feeding the one that is bigger more. So like @Maro2Bear asked. "Are they housed together"?
 

Tom

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
Lots of possibilities:
Wrong incubation substrate.
Wrong hatchling care in one of many ways.
Wrong baby care.
Ingestion of an object or sand.
Low appetite for one of many reasons.
Living as a pair.
Lack of hydration.
Too much time outside.

Most people don't start this species correctly from day one. Literally day one when they hatch. This can cause all sorts of problems including death. Your next question will likely be: Why this one and not the others? We can only guess. I've been raising groups of babies for over a decade now and every once in a while you get one that just doesn't want to grow well even when everything seems perfect. This scenario is very rare though. Maybe one in 200-300. Sometimes a baby hatches and you can tell from day one something just isn't quite right. Its rare that everything seems fine in those first few days and then something like this develops later. When that happens, I suspect one of the first causes I listed.
 

Thomas tortoise

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
I noticed some sand on the bigger ones shell... is that their bedding. Sand?
 

Yvonne G

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The size difference is typical when TWO are housed together.

I used to call it 'mental bullying' until I was made fun of. But you don't always see something physical. It's like mental telepathy. And stressful for both of them. One is telling the other to get out of the territory, but he can't. Even though he eats, he stays small to be inconspicuous. When they get bigger, if both are male, the more submissive will not grow the obvious male characteristics, big gular, large tail, concave plastron.

If you separate them, each into his own enclosure, the smaller one will grow.
 

shawnateerow

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
Can you send close up ups of the back of small ones neck and legs??
 

Barbecue

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
wow, will b interesting to learn more on this
 

Marlin4000

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
Siblings of many species vary in size. The smaller one may have nothing wrong with it and will be a happy, healthy tortoise. In fact we raise lots of Sulcatas and last year's hatchlings mostly grew at the same rate, but one is noticeably smaller than its brothers and sisters... but eats well and lives with the others. We have decided to keep this tortoise and see if the genetics runs reasonably true and its future offspring will be smaller too. Other than size, we see no problems with our single smaller than the others Sulcata juvenile.
 

Sue Ann

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These two are from the same clutch of eggs, were raised exactly the same way, and both seem very healthy over a year after hatching, but look at the size difference. The other five from the clutch are just as big. Any idea what gives?
You cannot raise 2 torts together. The large one bullies the smaller one and takes the food. Please read Sulcata care sheets. You are lucky he is still alive.
 

casstom702

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Lots of possibilities:
Wrong incubation substrate.
Wrong hatchling care in one of many ways.
Wrong baby care.
Ingestion of an object or sand.
Low appetite for one of many reasons.
Living as a pair.
Lack of hydration.
Too much time outside.

Most people don't start this species correctly from day one. Literally day one when they hatch. This can cause all sorts of problems including death. Your next question will likely be: Why this one and not the others? We can only guess. I've been raising groups of babies for over a decade now and every once in a while you get one that just doesn't want to grow well even when everything seems perfect. This scenario is very rare though. Maybe one in 200-300. Sometimes a baby hatches and you can tell from day one something just isn't quite right. Its rare that everything seems fine in those first few days and then something like this develops later. When that happens, I suspect one of the first causes I listed.
They were only a month old when I got them. I housed them in a split enclosure with everything being identical. At 18 months they were both moved to outside enclosures for the summer and brought back to their indoor enclosures for the winter. They both eat very well and the only health issue either of them has had, other than the not growing thing, is dry skin. They have two areas to soak, a stream of running water that they drink from, and I give them weekly electrolyte soaks and use olive oil on their skin and that cleared up the dry skin issue, but they are three years old now and still no bigger than a box turtle.
 

wellington

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How were they hatched and housed before you got them, if you know? Are they from the same clutch?
 

Tom

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They were only a month old when I got them. I housed them in a split enclosure with everything being identical. At 18 months they were both moved to outside enclosures for the summer and brought back to their indoor enclosures for the winter. They both eat very well and the only health issue either of them has had, other than the not growing thing, is dry skin. They have two areas to soak, a stream of running water that they drink from, and I give them weekly electrolyte soaks and use olive oil on their skin and that cleared up the dry skin issue, but they are three years old now and still no bigger than a box turtle.
Living outside full time at a young age will slow their growth tremendously, especially so in our dry climate. Might one enclosure have received more sun or more shade?

Do you know what incubation media the breeder used?
 

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