Obsessive Digging

HMWallace

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Jun 8, 2022
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2
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Redondo Beach/California
I have had a male California desert tortoise for 30 years. Last September he started digging himself into exhaustion. I thought maybe it was a hibernation thing. After he came out of hibernation this year he has begun to do it again. All day long digging holes. There have been no changes in his pen or sleeping quarters. I have no idea what is going on. Any ideas?
 

Tom

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I have had a male California desert tortoise for 30 years. Last September he started digging himself into exhaustion. I thought maybe it was a hibernation thing. After he came out of hibernation this year he has begun to do it again. All day long digging holes. There have been no changes in his pen or sleeping quarters. I have no idea what is going on. Any ideas?
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
 

HMWallace

New Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
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2
Location (City and/or State)
Redondo Beach/California
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
H
I have had a male California desert tortoise for 30 years. Last September he started digging himself into exhaustion. I thought maybe it was a hibernation thing. After he came out of hibernation this year he has begun to do it again. All day long digging holes. There have been no changes in his pen or sleeping quarters. I have no idea what is going on. Any ideas?
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
They are a fossorial species. This is what they do. They live most of their lives underground in the wild. Its not normal for them to be walking around topside all day like they do in our captive environment.

Here is the correct care info. Most of the care info for this species is wrong. They need a heated shelter for part of each year, and they need to be brumated indoors under controlled consistent conditions. They also need regular soaks to avoid dehydration and the complications that go with it. Questions are welcome:
In the 30 years that I have had him, he has never done this.
 

TammyJ

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I would love to see him and his enclosure. Is he eating and drinking normally?
 

Ciri

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Has anything in his surrounding area changed? Including any construction on the house, or construction next-door? I had some behavioral issues with a desert box turtle when I had construction done in an area not far from her. They are very sensitive creatures.
 

Yvonne G

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Try running a sprinkler for him. Make some puddles.
 

TammyJ

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How about some pictures? Maybe we can help more if we have a visual of his habitat.
I agree that it may be due to higher temperatures at this time.
 
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