So aggressive


Jan 25, 2021
Location (City and/or State)
Anyone else have a male who is extremely aggressive only towards other male Hermann's but no other tortoise male or female?

"Herman", my 3yr old eastern will not tolerate another male hermann. He is perfectly fine around female hermanns, female & Male russians, basically any other tortoise but another male hermann.

"Tank", my 2yr old eastern hermann is the "alpha" of his enclosure. He doesnt harm other turtles he just stances higher than them to let them know. But he becomes completely submissive to herman (my 3yr old eastern) probably bc he's almost double his size. Tank is never the aggressor, its always Herman. & its not subtle hints of showing dominance, its vicious violent attacks. Chasing tank while snapping at his back feet. Ramming when he catches him. Trying to bite at his face. Ive always separated them before Herman could cause any physical harm but given the chance I fully believe Herman would kill Tank. Herman was always the sweetest boy. For years I have never seen an ounce of aggression from him until I saw that side of him with tank. I didnt know he even had that in him.

Before anyone gets upset, no, I do not have 2 male hermann tortoises housed together.. Tank is an exceptional escape artist when he gets bored. He has tunneled into hermanns enclosure twice now in the past year. After the first time I thought I had made it "tank proof" but somehow he got in the other day. The first time he got into hermans enclosure was when I saw them face to face ramming into each other. This second time is when I saw tank being submissive but Herman just wouldn't stop attacking and snapping at him.

This isnt just the obvious problem of tank invading hermans space because my male Russian has done it a few times & Herman couldn't have cared less that Sheldon or Shelby was in his territory. He hasn't cared when its been any other tortoise except tank.

I clearly have to move either herman or tanks enclosure to another room or I believe if this happens again & God forbid im not home, tank won't survive it.

I got some advice that i should make a whole new enclosure so it's neutral ground, nobodies territory & allow them both to come across each other in it & referee any fights.. I dismissed that instantly bc i think it will just cause so much unnecessary stress on both animals not only being uprooted to a new strange habitat but being forced to share it with each other. I thought about putting their existing enclosures side by side separating them with plexy glass so they could get used to each other but again, worried about stress..

Just curious if anyone has had this issue & if they have successfully calmed the aggression.. I dont think its going to be possible. I just need to move the enclosures to separate rooms of the house so they can't come across each other again.. But I'd really like to hear any suggestions

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