They are missing

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lovelyrosepetal

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Hey everyone, I am posting this with a heavy heart. I put my tortoises outside in their outside pen, it was a nice day and I wanted them to get some fresh air and sunshine, while they could still get some. I just got a new one from Tom. It was the most perfect little sulcata ever. I was going to post pictures after I put them on my computer but everything has been a bit hectic and I hadn't gotten around to it. Anyways, I have been putting my tortoises in this pen for over three months and never had any issues with them. I am usually out there with them but not always. We don't have any dogs or cats, just a few chickens and box turtles, I figured there wasn't any harm. Well, I had them unsupervised for a little over an hour and when I went to get them there were only two in the pen. I had four. I looked everywhere. I searched and I searched until after the sun went down and I could not see anymore. I never found them. I am heartsick. They are gone and it is my fault. If they die because it gets too cold for them overnight I have no one to blame but me. I am missing mine and my husband's. I don't know what else to do. I have put this on craigslist and I am making some "lost" posters to put up around our neighborhood but I am not very hopeful. I fear that the cold night will do them in. Please don't leave your baby tortoises outside unless you are watching them. You don't want to have to have the heartache that I have. Everytime I close my eyes all I can see are my two little tortoises dead from the cold. You don't want to have to go through this. Don't take the chance, it isn't worth it.
 

KBisMe

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I'm so sorry :( I hope you'll get a happy surprise and find them safe.
 

mattgrizzlybear

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I am so sorry. Never give up, never lose hope! Hopefully they burrowed and survive.
 

shellysmom

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:( Are you sure they didn't just burrow down a bit either in the pen or somewhere nearby outside it? Don't give up looking! If night temps there are above freezing, they can survive, especially if they dig into the ground a little. DON'T GIVE UP! It's not hopeless by any means.
 

lovelyrosepetal

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They might have burrowed but I looked through all the grass and weeds, under every rock and branch. I went to my front yard, behind my backyard and asked my neighbors. No one had seen them and while I was on my hands and knees and feeling all around I did not find them. I don't know if they got out on their own or if someone or something took them. I hope you are right and I am going to look around for them more as soon as it is light outside but it was pretty cold while I looked.........
 

wellington

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First the tomorrow morning when the sun comes out bright and warm, start looking for them again. If the burrowed in for the night, they will warm up in the sun. If its a cloudy day, maybe try putting some bright warm lights out to see if they will come out. Some good treat type food that smells really good might entice them to come out too. Good luck, so sorry, and don't give up hope. Keep looking, and be sure to get in hands and knees and feel every spot. Keep us posted.
 

Tracy Gould

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try leaving the tastiest offering u can think of for that breed of tort in the area u last saw them if the dug down that may just temp them back up really hope u find the little loves x
 

lovelyrosepetal

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Thanks. I have been praying and got my kids to help me. We will resume the search tomorrow. I will put out some squash and maybe some mazuri. It might help if they are there....
 

Watsonpartyof4

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lovelyrosepetal said:
Thanks. I have been praying and got my kids to help me. We will resume the search tomorrow. I will put out some squash and maybe some mazuri. It might help if they are there....

I am so sorry you are feeling so bad, I am sending you postive loving vibes. Don't give up hope! I will be thinking of you and your torts tomorrow. Best of luck to you all.
 

tortadise

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If there really is no way for them to escape they will come. Animals seem to possess a gift much stronger then any human could wish. The sense of winter coming and they seem to vanish. It is a beautiful gift that you must cherish and understand of these animals. Nobody is blame in such occurrences at hand. I hope they going to show back up for you.
 

lynnedit

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Fingers crossed and hoping the best for you! This kind of thing happens to all of us. Please keep us posted.
 

CourtneyAndCarl

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The first time I put Carl outdoors, I left him for twenty minutes, came back and couldn't find him anywhere. It was a baby pool with at least 3 inches of wall between him and the outdoors so my visions were of birds swooping down and carrying him off.

I couldn't find him for two hours of searching... This was in a 4 foot baby pool, mind you.

This was after two weeks of me having him and I was devastated, I had lost my tort in less than a month!! Welp, two hours later as I started to feel incredibly helpless, there he was, in the most random spot of the baby pool, buried all the way down.

Tortoises that dig, especially the baby ones, instinctually know to hide so that predators can't find them. So obviously, they are going to try and hide in a place that they can't be found.

I really hope your little guys are just really well hidden. And if they are, that probably means they are pretty insulated from the cold, too.
 

Tom

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Your overnight low will be mid 40s. They can survive that overnight. They are very good at digging in near root balls, weed bases, near corners or walls, under any cage furniture, etc... Your baby did that regularly. Post a pic of the enclosure. I'm going to guess they are still in there. Whenever I went out to retrieve those guys from their 4x8' sunning enclosure, I would find the first 4 or 5 right away and then I would spend 10 minutes trying to find the last one. I was constantly muttering, " There's always one..." Many times I was sure one was lost somehow, but then I'd always find them. Of course I'd be sweating profusely by that point and near panic...
 

dcwolfe

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Your not alone we lost one of our hatchling sulcutas in a large backyard that is full of dogs and chickens and we didnt find him tell two days later. It is critical to get out there in the morning around 8sh here and they like to come out and sit in the sun. I think the heat lamp is a good idea by the spot that he was last seen. Good luck and I will say a prayer for your little guy.
 

Tortus

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Yeah they're probably still there. Mine is in a 39" x 20" container and sometimes I have a hard time finding it. It's like they can become part of the landscape.
 

lovelyrosepetal

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An update; today I woke up as soon as the sun came up and I went out to look for my missing tortoises. I also finished my posters and put them all around my neighborhood. I used the heat lamp to warm up the ground in spots. I searched for four hours and then got my kids dressed and went to church. After church we went out and looked more for the tortoises. I have not found them. I have no idea where they went and feel like I will never find them. I wonder if a hawk took off with them or if a kid came over from the nearby park and took off with them. I find it hard to believe that after the sun warmed everything up and after I dug up a quarter of my backyard and went through as much weeds and grass as I could that they were still missing. My feeling is that they are gone. Where to I have no idea but it breaks my heart. My husband could hardly wait for his to become a giant and I have been wanting one of Tom's for so long and she was so perfect. I named her Liberty. Thank you for all of your kind wishes.
 

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wellington

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Sorry they didn't show up today. That doesn't mean they won't show up later. Keep an eye o Craig's list incase someone stole them and are trying to sell them. You might want to report it to the police as if they were stolen, just incase? Keep looking every day, you never know. Also, look outside the enclosure too. Keeping fingers crossed.
 
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