What age should a DT start brumating?

Susannadior

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Murphy just turned 1 and we were told not to let him brumate for the first 3 years. Is this true? And if not, how to we prepare him for brumation? We live in southern California where its in the mid-80s in the day and high-50s at night. He lives in a raised enclosure outside, but has heat and a hide.

Thank you in advance!

http://imgur.com/a/QSPS2yg
 

Yvonne G

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According to the State, you should brumate them the first year of life. Personally, I don't allow it until they're three years old.
 

Susannadior

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According to the State, you should brumate them the first year of life. Personally, I don't allow it until they're three years old.
I thought 3 years was the correct time as well. 1 just seems too young. Thank you for your response!
 

Susannadior

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According to the State, you should brumate them the first year of life. Personally, I don't allow it until they're three years old.
Another question I have for you :) what temp would you recommend that I keep his enclosure at in the winter where he is comfortable?
 

Yvonne G

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I keep my indoor babies 80-85F day and night.
 

Tom

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This is a controversial subject. People tend to feel strongly one way or the other. I see both sides.

1. I hibernate all temperate species their first year and every year. I see no reason not to. They are not more fragile. They'd do it out in the wild. BUT, it must be done correctly. Leaving them outside subject to the cruel whims of Mother Nature, is NOT doing it correctly. I've never had a single problem hibernating first year babies when done with the correct lead in and lead out, and with stable controlled indoor temps.
2. You don't "have" to hibernate the tortoise ever. Many people don't, and the tortoises are fine. Seems unnatural to me, but I can't argue with the obvious results.

You will need to make a large indoor enclosure if you want to keep the tortoise up. Winter temps above ground here are far too unstable and erratic. You can't maintain good stable temps in a raised outdoor enclosure. You can still use the outdoor enclosure when we have our frequent warm sunny winter days.

Be careful with the dog. The dog should never have access to the tortoise area. Its just a question of time...
 
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