NEW TO REDFOOT TORTOISE

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jpdhld

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Her is my girl Jewel! I am new to all of this and any pointers I can get would be great! We have had Jewel for 5 days! I think she is doing good, she will only eat or drink when we put her by or On her food or water, we are doing a daily soak and they I try to get her to eat! Is soaking daily to much? We got her from Petsmart and well I am learning really fast that Petsmart people DO NOT KNOW MUCH! I am waiting for some tortoise books to come in to my library so I can learn more! So Like I said any pointers would be wonderful!

Thanks
 
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Redstrike

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I'd recommend you visit this site if you haven't already:
http://www.tortoiselibrary.com/index.html
Loads of good information here, so take your time and digest as much of it as you can when time permits.

I generally keep a warm and cool side in my enclosure, the gradient runs at ~90ºF on the warm end and 82ºF on the cool end. My lighting compliments this heat gradient (bright on the warm end, dim on the cool end). Many just run things at about 85ºF throughout with great success - there's nothing wrong with this, I just like to provide options. There's always water available and it's changed everyday. I use the ceramic plant saucers and bury them until they're level with the substrate.

I use ceramic heat emitters (CHE's) on a thermostat to heat the enclosure, seems to work fairly well. They're cheapest on Amazon. Looks like you have cypress or hardwood mulch, this is also what I use. To boost humidity, I run a couple heat ropes under my cypress mulch, adding 500 ml of water 1-2 times per week (pour the water in only a few spots and let it spread out under the cypress, otherwise you run a greater risk of shell rot with constantly wet substrate contacting your torts plastron - moist is good, constantly wet is not!). I mist my two torts every morning at feeding time and maybe once in the evening if I think of it. As long as humidity is high (>70%), things should be okay for smooth growth.

There are a couple good ropes out there:
http://www.amazon.com/Hydor-HYDROKABLE-Heater-14-Feet-18-Gallon/dp/B0006JLPGI?tag=vglnk-c944-20
http://www.bigappleherp.com/Big-Apple-Flexible-Heat-Ropes - I use these, the others look darn good to me too. Just as long as they're waterproof...

I provide them a humid hide, there should be some links on here from Tom or others on how to build these. This is now being accepted as a critical component for smooth growth in captivity (humidity in general is...the humid hide may help ensure they get the proper humidity levels) I also have loads of spider plants and pothos planted in their enclosure along with some artificial silk plants for them to hide in. TerryO has a great page on the website I provided you above on this ("Planting an Interesting Habitat").


UVB is debated among keepers, I'm a firm advocate of providing UVB as these tortoises are diurnal and occur in savanna habitats. Mercury Vapor Bulbs provide some of the best output, I use one but am considering not replacing it when it blows. The long tube UVB's are pretty good, I also use this as well. Zoo Med makes some very competitive UVB lighting products. I'd avoid the compact fluorescent UVB bulbs, folks have had issues in the past whether by misuse or a defective product that has since been corrected, I'm unsure, I'd just avoid the hassle and stick with an MVB or long tube fluorescent.

As for diet, I stick to mostly greens (wild as often as I can in summer) with fruit once every 1-2 weeks. Protein is on a 2-3 week interval, I prefer bugs, but also provide them with Mazuri. I will say that I'm particularly fond of Zoo Med's Forest Tortoise diet, they get this about once/week. You'll read all kinds of diet regimes, it's up to you to decide what works best for you and your tort.

If you can afford to purchase this book, don't hesitate to do so:
http://www.pingleton.com/redfoot/redfoots.htm
If you can't, hopefully your library has, or is willing to obtain, a copy. I'll leave the rest to this book, Mark's site, and others insights. Hope this was helpful, and congratulations!
 

jkingler

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Is it normal for a Redfoot to be so yellow? I know nothing about the range of possible coloring on Redfoot tortoises, but in my ignorance, I would have thought that what you have there is a Yellowfoot.
 

wellington

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jkingler said:
Is it normal for a Redfoot to be so yellow? I know nothing about the range of possible coloring on Redfoot tortoises, but in my ignorance, I would have thought that what you have there is a Yellowfoot.

I would like to know the answer too. I have seen a few for sale on CL called redfoots and I would guessed them as yellowfoots.

Almost forgot, WELCOME :D and use only in for given from TFO. Most others sources, books, etc are outdated, wrong info.
 

redfootraider

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Am fairly new to the red foot ownership too but one thing I can tell you is everyone here is very good and you can trust what they tell you. I have learned a lot from everyone here at the TFO is very reliable info and welcome to the TFO
 

Redstrike

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There's a really good thread listed on the RF forum on how to differentiate redfoots from yellowfoots - it's listed at the top as an "important thread". This may answer the previous quesitons...?

A key characteristic is the scale on their nose, I can't quite tell from your photo whether it's a single scale or if it's two.
 
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