New indoor enclosure of an Eastern Hermann

Kerri Caruso

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Oct 2, 2015
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Hi, I recently received my Eastern Hermann hatchling yesterday morning. I wanted to share pictures of my enclosure, food, and pictures of him to get ideas on how I could improve his home.
The photos posted are photos of:
enclosure
substrate
Sphagnum moss to help with humidity
food being used (dandelion, strawberry leaf, parsley, hibiscus flower, and the Mazuri LS diet which is mixed with the herbs)

The only issue I'm having is keeping the humidity at a decent percent. It currently is staying at around 38-44%, id like to keep it anywhere from 50-60% because thats ideal for him being a hatchling. I keep the moss wet, and I spray the enclosure while also pouring water onto the substrate for it to soak up daily.

I soak him 1-2 times a day in luke warm water to help keep him hydrated. I feed him once a day with a mixture of the Mazuri diet, and a herb. I wet the food to make it easier to eat.

I am unsure of how to tell when he poops. The substrate is so dark I don't know how to tell the difference in the poop and substrate.
 

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Merrick

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Higher then %50-60 more like 70-90 is better for humidity you may want to add some plants and put a cover to help hold I humidity
 

turdle yerdle

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You can tell that poop is poop, when you see one you will know, he may not be pooping because of the new environment
 

Kerri Caruso

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So far he has let out some white substance during his soakings. I googled it as Uric acid or something along those lines. But that's all I've gotten out of him so far! Any tips on how to keep the humidity up? I've covered the top of the enclosure more and it's help slightly but not as much as it needs
 

Lyn W

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As Merrick said some plants may help humidity and to add interest and also make him feel more secure.
See www.thetortoisetable.org.uk for ideas for torts safe plants for food and enclosures. Spider plants are popular but if shop bought re pot in chemical free soil allow time for any fertilisers/ sprays that may have been used on them to grow. If you bury the plants in pots or trays they can be easily replaced if nibbled or bulldozed.


I would sink his dishes level with the substrate to make it easier for him to access food and self soak when needed.
 

Kerri Caruso

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I visited my vet and they said the humidity should stay around 40 percent, which is very contradicting to the 70 percent and to the other research i have done. I'm not sure which to follow

Also is there anyway to get this thread moved to the hermann tortoise section, maybe i can get more feedback on other things, rather than keeping it here?
 

Merrick

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I visited my vet and they said the humidity should stay around 40 percent, which is very contradicting to the 70 percent and to the other research i have done. I'm not sure which to follow

Also is there anyway to get this thread moved to the hermann tortoise section, maybe i can get more feedback on other things, rather than keeping it here?
Is your vet a primarily reptile vet?
 

Linhdan Nguyen

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I visited my vet and they said the humidity should stay around 40 percent, which is very contradicting to the 70 percent and to the other research i have done. I'm not sure which to follow

Also is there anyway to get this thread moved to the hermann tortoise section, maybe i can get more feedback on other things, rather than keeping it here?
Sometimes vets dont have that much knowledge on tortoises. My vet specializes in avian & reptiles and she said my Russian tortoises were okay with 10% humidity. This is wrong :( They need around 40-50%. And hatchlings need much more.
 

NDevon

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Is your vet a primarily reptile vet?

I think the better question is 'has the vet kept tortoises and successfully brought them on from hatchlings to adults?'

Vets know what they were taught when they trained and/or they keep updated through various mediums, but very few will be hands on with tortoises. It's always difficult to question a professionals advice, but vets need to know about hundreds of types of animals, certainly in the UK they spend more time at university than a trainee doctor, they can't be expected to be experts on every creature. A doctor may be an expert on hearts, but ask her about the latest research on sever head trauma treatment and most will admit that's not their area of expertise. It's pretty unlikely a vet would know everything about every animal, they likely know the basics of most if not all, but there isn't any way they could know the specific details of how to keep every single animal in captivity unless that was their specialist subject area.

Humidity wasn't really considered not so many years ago, but when it was researched and people did real world studies with their tortoises they found that more humid environments made such a difference. Reading on here I'm sure you will be able to see the success many of the members have had bringing on their tortoises keeping humidity levels higher. Also, it is generally considered that 40-60% humidity in the home is comfortable for us humans. 60% isn't dripping wet, it sounds a lot but it really isn't. 40% is actually pretty dry. 70% isn't that humid when you considers that many of us have enclosures that sit in the 90% range for some breeds.

Ultimately Kerri you need to make the choices, it's your tortoise, nobody will judge you for making an informed decision as long as you are confident you've made it with the best advice and wi he tortoises best intentions. It's really hard seeing all the contradictory advice, I spent time on several sites before coming here, but what I found here is a very consistent message on how to keep my tortoises healthy, so I dumped the other sites and stuck around here. It's very confusing, so you have to be confident the people telling you how to care for tortoises know what they are doing, I did this by seeing the respect ey got from others and the beautiful condition their tortoises are in. Also, the fact they haven't just been doing this for a few months but many many years made it obvious they were correct. Lastly, many of the people here have changed the way they care for their tortoises as people gain more knowledge, that's how science should be, sticking with one belief and refusing to consider anything else is how religion works.

You need to do what you are happy with as they are your pets and you have them for many years to come hopefully, make an informed choice and make it for the right reasons :)
 

Yvonne G

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I visited my vet and they said the humidity should stay around 40 percent, which is very contradicting to the 70 percent and to the other research i have done. I'm not sure which to follow

Also is there anyway to get this thread moved to the hermann tortoise section, maybe i can get more feedback on other things, rather than keeping it here?

I'm afraid your vet isn't as 'up' on Hermanni care as our resident Hermanni person, HermanniChris. He has written a great care sheet for our Forum, and this is what he says about humidity for the Hermanni, " Humidity is crucial in properly housing Hermann’s tortoises long term. Dehydration is a real threat especially in artificial conditions. A humidity level of around 70% is needed and this can be achieved by offering the tortoises a proper substrate, a constant supply of fresh water and regular, light mistings with a spray bottle. T. hermanni of all ages ages will appreciate a “fake rain” through means of misting or spraying them down. They will walk with their bodies held high, extend their heads and necks into the “rain” and drink from little puddles or from the beads of water that form on the walls of the enclosure."

You can find that care sheet pinned at the top of our Hermanns section - http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/sticky-hermanns-tortoise-care-sheet-updated.101410/
 

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