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New Sulcata mommy

Discussion in 'Sulcata tortoises' started by Franklin04, Dec 5, 2018 at 5:25 PM.

  1. Franklin04

    Franklin04 New Member

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    Our Sulcata hatchling has been thriving in its home for the last couple months. As of yesterday it’s movement has slowed down and it has not been eating as much. Any ideas?
  2. daniellenc

    daniellenc Well-Known Member

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    Post pics of your setup, temps, and heat sources. He’s probably too cold.
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  3. TechnoCheese

    TechnoCheese Well-Known Member

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  4. Franklin04

    Franklin04 New Member

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    Temp is about 35C we have the heat lamp on all the time and the uv light on for 12 hours a day.

    9C947DC1-5BC9-4600-8D5A-848C191B2921.jpeg
  5. daniellenc

    daniellenc Well-Known Member

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    First order of business is swapping out the temp gauge as the dial ones are severely inaccurate. Any digital model will work and here is a cheap one for ideas: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H1R0K68/?tag=exoticpetnetw-20

    The wood shavings you're using appear to be aspen which is toxic. Instead replace with coco coir, fir/orchid bark, or cypress and keep it moist at all times.

    Next that water bowl is a death trap. Either replace with a cheap plant saucer or sink into the substrate so it is flush with the ground. Reducing flipping and makes getting in and out much easier.

    I know by now you're annoyed.....we all were at first and know you have been given this information as "proper" care by a pet store or uneducated breeder. This is not your fault you have done what was in your mind the right thing, but hankfully these changes are cheap and easy to make.

    Lastly, what is your heat and bulb source? Some are better than others but his behavior and that temp gauge indicate your baby is cold and probably too dry. Read the sulcata links posted above for additional help and start looking at larger cage options now. The one he is in is already much too small:(
  6. TechnoCheese

    TechnoCheese Well-Known Member

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    Your enclosure is also much too small for him to thermoregulate, and he needs total darkness at night. Be sure to give those links a read.
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  7. Franklin04

    Franklin04 New Member

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    Thank you. The store we got him from has been no help. Every time we talk to someone they tell us something differently, contradictory to the last.
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  8. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    Well, you've come to the right place to get up-to-date care info. I agree with what's been said in the above posts.
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  9. Franklin04

    Franklin04 New Member

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    Do you recommend a tortoise table? Where is a good place to get one?
  10. Cheryl Hills

    Cheryl Hills Well-Known Member

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    He is going to need an 8 by 4 enclosure for now. It might last a year or two. Then he will need a much much bigger one.
  11. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Do you soak your baby ? The enclosure looks very dry. Please begin to soak your baby right now or the kidneys can be damaged. Soak for 30 min every twice a day in warm water ( 98,6 F )
    You need asap a ceramic heat emitter. A che produces warmth but no light. Tortoises need it dark when they sleep. The night temps should be 80 F. Not higher and not lower.
    And please do asap the changes the other members told you before. A bigger enclosure, another soil ( I prefer fine orchid bark ) another water bowl ( a terracotta flower pot saucer will be fine ).
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  12. Franklin04

    Franklin04 New Member

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    I have made most of the changes suggested. In the process of getting a bigger enclosure. Is there one you suggest? We have been soaking twice a day since we have had it.
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  13. TechnoCheese

    TechnoCheese Well-Known Member

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    No, your tortoise needs a closed chamber with very little ventilation to hold the 80-100% humidity it needs. That is very hard to achieve with an open top.

    You’ll have to build your own closed chamber, but I would recommend using the biggest tub you can find(50 gallons or 4x2 Christmas tree tub) until you get it finished.
  14. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    It is good you soaked your baby tort. Well done. Pet stores do not have the newest informations about raising a tortoise baby healthy.
    I prefer big vivariums for my growing torts. It is a closed chamber but you can observe the tort very well through the glas.
    But a Christmas tree tub like @TechnoCheese had suggested makes a good enclosure too.
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