Shock of my life

Anyfoot

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I’ve had the biggest shock of my life tonight.

Just been into the tortoise house to do my usual check on them all before lights go out, and found 5 babies that have hatched out of the ground. All 5 have fully absorbed their egg sacks. They all weighed 25g each and look yo have a bit of growth already.
When I’ve incubated them they are usually 19 to 22g, I know for a fact 3 of them can’t have eaten anything because they were on the upper tier. Bigger weights maybe just a fluke, I don’t know.
My enclosure is 21ft x 14ft ish. With an upper tier at about 5ft high above the caves with a ramp coming down to the lower level. I found 3 on the upper tier and 2 on the ground level at the complete opposite end of the enclosure. The adults always nest on the upper tier, So 2 of them have traveled all the way down the ramp and 20ft away from the other 3.
I can’t find where they came up out of the ground.
I’ve soaked them for about 40mins. Drank a lot, they were literally holding their heads under water for 5 minute intervals drinking.

It’s late here and my lights are due to go off. So in a mad panic I’ve found a box put some coir in with moss and a bit of dandelion.
I’ll sort something bigger out tomorrow.

Yesterday I reluctantly let 4 of my babies go to a new home, I good home where I know they will be cared for correctly. Dawn has being nagging at me constantly about finding homes for a while now. We have too many babies. Sod’s law we got 5 more today :D
A few photos below.

60B15208-9F48-405E-9413-E8A7C84BCE9B.jpeg 52EEE420-3DBA-48BB-BA03-0E4A227FF060.jpeg 042352D3-77E9-4BFC-B218-4FB4DC9EE4DE.jpeg B94F19F4-0774-4ED6-A8BD-D711E772D64F.jpeg 5C36F4E6-F02F-4BF4-9589-D97F811A6FFE.jpeg 91E35A97-A11F-48F4-8D4E-6C97F04FAFDA.jpeg 22CF6D2F-18AA-4B0B-83D9-60EF3E1D3C28.jpeg 29CF9E32-EEDA-4D2F-BD3F-BAF85724E544.jpeg 9AF0C5E3-43C1-4E14-B791-9D1814860E85.jpeg 3E26269D-1F84-44A0-ABA5-9EDDFBD5D7DA.jpeg ED19A469-5765-4A69-A894-5D3D29B8992B.jpeg 52E34574-3F06-4220-8DA8-ED41DE1141FD.jpeg 2E015782-D878-4D6F-A609-4C86668880A0.jpeg
 

Anyfoot

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I know this shock you speak of. What a nice surprise.

Life will find a way...
Tom. Did you notice any differences between the babies that hatched out of the ground to the babies you incubate. Weight, growth, hardened off for example.
 

Tom

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Tom. Did you notice any differences between the babies that hatched out of the ground to the babies you incubate. Weight, growth, hardened off for example.
Almost universally, everyone told me that babies out of the ground are hardier, more active, better eaters, etc… None of these people start babies the way I do with daily soaks and monsoon conditions. I found the opposite to be true. Dramatically so. My ground hatched babies always took weeks or months to catch up to well started babies that I artificially incubated and started well from day one. They were slower, more leery of people and handling, ate less, grew less, and were not as good as pets in general. They reminded me of wild caught animals that have to be nursed and babied into health, vs. a properly started CB baby that is ready to go from day one.

These were my results and observations from a hot dry climate and sulcata babies hatching out of the ground. Your situation might be different there.
 

Anyfoot

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Almost universally, everyone told me that babies out of the ground are hardier, more active, better eaters, etc… None of these people start babies the way I do with daily soaks and monsoon conditions. I found the opposite to be true. Dramatically so. My ground hatched babies always took weeks or months to catch up to well started babies that I artificially incubated and started well from day one. They were slower, more leery of people and handling, ate less, grew less, and were not as good as pets in general. They reminded me of wild caught animals that have to be nursed and babied into health, vs. a properly started CB baby that is ready to go from day one.

These were my results and observations from a hot dry climate and sulcata babies hatching out of the ground. Your situation might be different there.
Cheers. I shall watch and study as they grow.
 
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Anyfoot

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I'm curious how yours turn out in comparison to the ones you've incubated. Please share as you learn? :)
Will do. I’m just surprised they already have some growth on them.
If the ground is too dry in my enclosure (compared to the wet season in the wild), could they have sat underground for 3 or 4 weeks waiting for rain and when it didn’t turn up they were forced to raise to the surface.
 

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