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Tortoise on Hunger Strike...(help)

Discussion in 'Tortoise Health' started by Lark_Tortoise, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    Hi everyone! I have a Russian Tortoise, Tabitha. I've had her since last March, and she's always been a good eater. Within the last couples weeks, she would go on one or possibly two-day hunger strikes, but always finally ate.
    Now she spends the whole day burrowing in assorted places. I, mean she doesn't seem more sluggish or slower than usual. But she also hasn't eaten since Saturday or Sunday.
    Another thing I've noted is that within the weeks before she stopped eating she had been pulling out her favorite foods when I feed her (radicchio and endive). But now she doesn't eat anything
    Heres a list of foods I feed her:
    1. spring mix
    2. Mustard greens
    3. Turnip greens
    3. Radicchio
    4. Endive
    5. Baby/big bok choi
    6. She used to like collard greens and store-bought dandelions but now she won't eat collard greens and only eats wild dandelions.

    Does anyone know what this might be? Is she trying to hibernate? How long can she go not eating? Is she sick?
    --Thanks, Lark_Tortoise
    Moozillion likes this.
  2. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member

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    Hello, your tortoise probably wants to hibernate. Can you tell us the temps in the enclosure of your tort ?
    Do you want yout tort to hibernate ?
    Moozillion and Gillian Moore like this.
  3. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    I don't want to hibernate her. I'm away from the house at the moment and will check the exact temp when I get home.
    It's roughly 90 something Fahrenheit under the UV light and 80 something Fahrenheit under the c.h.i.
    How can I prevent her from trying to hibernate?
    Should I get another c.h.i or lamp to raise the temp?
    Thanks. =)
    Moozillion likes this.
  4. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    In CT the days shorten and the natural lighting changes much sooner in the fall than where these tortoises come from. Photoperiod and type of light is extremely important in triggering burmation. What type of lighting do you use and how long are the lights on? Is there a window close by the enclosure or one that adds light to them room?
    Moozillion likes this.
  5. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    There are 2 windows, though neither are directly above. I want to get a timer for my lights, but I don't know where. They are usually on any time from 5:40-6:00 to 8:30pm or so when I have school.
    The chi is on all day and night.

    I will check the brand when I get home.
    How can I adjust my light schedule to help her?
    Thanks.
  6. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    If you are trying to keep a tortoise from brumating, you will need a good full spectrum light and a 14-15 hour photoperiod. So a timer is essential. I use two T5 fluorescent fixtures. One is a good quality grow light that is on 15 hours. the second is a UVB bulb that is on 5-6 hours midday.
  7. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    Bee62 likes this.
  8. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    Update:
    I took her outside and then gave her a warm soak, and when I put her under the basking light she ate!!!!
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  9. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member

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    Good news. Keep her enclosure warm and offer fresh greens.
  10. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member

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    How large is your enclosure ?
  11. Lark_Tortoise

    Lark_Tortoise Active Member

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    We still need to upgrade--it's only 3ftx6ft with 16inx3ft loft.
    What can I do at the moment to make it warmer untill I know what lamp to get?
    Thanks!
    TammyJ likes this.
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