tortoise flips over and now is inactive

Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
31
Location (City and/or State)
belleville
hello! my eastern hermanns hatchling constantly loved climbing the walls of his enclosure and occasionally flips over bc of it ( no matter what i do he still does it ) but he did it yesterday and now he’s been kinda sluggish, only really staying in the same spot unless he’s hungry, he was moving around a bit before but is seemingly really tired. should i be concerned ??
 

KarenSoCal

Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jul 8, 2017
Messages
5,204
Location (City and/or State)
Low desert 50 mi SE of Palm Springs CA
Any time a tortoise, especially a hatchling, suddenly changes his behavior it's cause for scrutiny of his environment, as well as himself. It's not necessarily a cause for alarm.

So I'm going to ask a couple questions.
1) What size enclosure is he living in?
2) How long has he been in this enclosure?
3) What kind of lights and heating are you using?
4) Have you been letting him outside of his enclosure to walk around in the room he's in?
5) Could you post a couple pictures of your baby and his habitat? Maybe we can figure out why he's trying to get out all the time.

As far as his lethargy today, hopefully he's just tired out. Make sure to give him a good soak, and be sure he's warm enough.

In case you haven't seen it, here's a care sheet for Hermann's.

 
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
31
Location (City and/or State)
belleville
Any time a tortoise, especially a hatchling, suddenly changes his behavior it's cause for scrutiny of his environment, as well as himself. It's not necessarily a cause for alarm.

So I'm going to ask a couple questions.
1) What size enclosure is he living in?
2) How long has he been in this enclosure?
3) What kind of lights and heating are you using?
4) Have you been letting him outside of his enclosure to walk around in the room he's in?
5) Could you post a couple pictures of your baby and his habitat? Maybe we can figure out why he's trying to get out all the time.

As far as his lethargy today, hopefully he's just tired out. Make sure to give him a good soak, and be sure he's warm enough.

In case you haven't seen it, here's a care sheet for Hermann's.

hello !
he is living in a 3ftx2ft enclosure
he’s been living in there since july
i don’t remember much ab the specs of my lights but he enjoys his heat lamp so i assume that’s fine and his uvb has been doing good also but i do need to get it replaced ina month or two
i let him out maybe once a day to soak and then walk around bc if i don’t he will scratch at his walls all day
 

Attachments

  • image.jpg
    image.jpg
    1.7 MB · Views: 28
  • image.jpg
    image.jpg
    960.8 KB · Views: 27

KarenSoCal

Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jul 8, 2017
Messages
5,204
Location (City and/or State)
Low desert 50 mi SE of Palm Springs CA
It's difficult to know for sure what's bothering him, but I'll offer some possibilities.

First, what are your temps? Basking area, warm side, cool side, and nighttime low? And humidity?

The enclosure is kind of barren and too wide open. Babies need to have hiding places. They easily feel too exposed, and exposure leads to being found by a predator. Try putting a couple plants in there. Pothos, spider plants, and Boston fern do fairly well in enclosures, and also help raise humidity.

It could also be that by letting him out to walk around the room, you've taught him that there is a fun place out there, so he's trying to get there. Try keeping him in his enclosure once you get some plants in it.

It would be good to give him a hide to go in at night. It can be as easy as getting an opaque dishwashing bin from Walmart, turn it upside down, and cut a hole in the side for a door. Put it in the small area of the enclosure. You could also put a partially buried flower pot in the large section for another hide.

What are you using for nighttime heat? The low temp at night should not be lower than 80°, and the humidity should not be lower than 80%.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ISU
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
31
Location (City and/or State)
belleville
It's difficult to know for sure what's bothering him, but I'll offer some possibilities.

First, what are your temps? Basking area, warm side, cool side, and nighttime low? And humidity?

The enclosure is kind of barren and too wide open. Babies need to have hiding places. They easily feel too exposed, and exposure leads to being found by a predator. Try putting a couple plants in there. Pothos, spider plants, and Boston fern do fairly well in enclosures, and also help raise humidity.

It could also be that by letting him out to walk around the room, you've taught him that there is a fun place out there, so he's trying to get there. Try keeping him in his enclosure once you get some plants in it.

It would be good to give him a hide to go in at night. It can be as easy as getting an opaque dishwashing bin from Walmart, turn it upside down, and cut a hole in the side for a door. Put it in the small area of the enclosure. You could also put a partially buried flower pot in the large section for another hide.

What are you using for nighttime heat? The low temp at night should not be lower than 80°, and the humidity should not be lower than 80%.

thank you for those options !
his temps in his basking area stays up in the high 90s, the cooler areas are like high 80s, humidity stayed beteeen 60-70, i give him king baths every day because where i live isn’t very humid, i bought him an automatic mister tho so that should help, oh and his night time temps usually stay in the mid 80s, the heater in my room is the largest so it keeps my room warm for him.
i used to have many hides for him but he kept trying to climb them and would flip over, i never found a good solution for that, also any plants that he could eat that you would recommend, because he does eat anything even if it’s not food ( which includes fries but i don’t let him eat it lol )
 

KarenSoCal

Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jul 8, 2017
Messages
5,204
Location (City and/or State)
Low desert 50 mi SE of Palm Springs CA
Have you measured the night temps in his sleeping area? It's hard to tell from the picture, but is his enclosure on the floor or on a table? I'm thinking that he's cold at night. With the lid of his enclosure down, maybe on the floor, and his lights off, I doubt that the temp is mid 80's. The temp in your room doesn't transfer into the habitat like you would think it does, especially since warm air rises instead of staying at floor level. If you need some night heat, you need to get a CHE (ceramic heat emitter). You can buy them at Petco or Petsmart.

For a hide, you could do the plastic bin with a door hole, then bury it in substrate. Make sure it's all the way down to the enclosure floor, then dump substrate over it so it's a gentle slope up to the top of the bin. He shouldn't flip himself that way. Here's my enclosure. You can see the entrance to the hide, and lots of mulch surrounding it.

20200627_141311.jpg

Pothos, Boston fern, and spider plants do fairly well in the habitat, and if the tort munches on them, it's OK. You can also try artificial plants, but they don't help with humidity, and you don't want him to eat plastic. Wandering Jew is a "feed in moderation", so if he gulps it down, you'd have to remove it. Bromeliads are safe, but I don't know how well they hold up under the heat of the lights. Same with African violets.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
31
Location (City and/or State)
belleville
Have you measured the night temps in his sleeping area? It's hard to tell from the picture, but is his enclosure on the floor or on a table? I'm thinking that he's cold at night. With the lid of his enclosure down, maybe on the floor, and his lights off, I doubt that the temp is mid 80's. The temp in your room doesn't transfer into the habitat like you would think it does, especially since warm air rises instead of staying at floor level. If you need some night heat, you need to get a CHE (ceramic heat emitter). You can buy them at Petco or Petsmart.

For a hide, you could do the plastic bin with a door hole, then bury it in substrate. Make sure it's all the way down to the enclosure floor, then dump substrate over it so it's a gentle slope up to the top of the bin. He shouldn't flip himself that way. Here's my enclosure. You can see the entrance to the hide, and lots of mulch surrounding it.

View attachment 311730

Pothos, Boston fern, and spider plants do fairly well in the habitat, and if the tort munches on them, it's OK. You can also try artificial plants, but they don't help with humidity, and you don't want him to eat plastic. Wandering Jew is a "feed in moderation", so if he gulps it down, you'd have to remove it. Bromeliads are safe, but I don't know how well they hold up under the heat of the lights. Same with African violets.
hello ! i will keep more of an eye on how he does at night, we painted an old desk of mine for him so he sits on a table, it could be a window in my room causing a draft, i just wanted to know these things so i can get him new stuff for an early ✨christmas✨ so ty, the power went out the other day and got me worried so do u recommend anything if it does that again to keep him warm?
 
Top