What to feed baby tortoise

astridthetortoise

New Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
23
Location (City and/or State)
Hertfordshire
Hello

I have a one year old Russian tortoise, she(maybe), lives in a tortoise table with soil. She has usually 30-40% humidity, is this good?

Also, I usually feed her romaine lettuce and radicchio and kale.. however I’m running out of options. I want to give her more variety and more nutrients. I live in the uk and I don’t have a garden so I can’t get hold of plants that many websites mention, plus it’s cold so they don’t always grow. What can I buy from the supermarket that is different and that is nutritional for her? Thank you!
 

TechnoCheese

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2016
Messages
4,244
Location (City and/or State)
Lewisville, Texas
In addition to reading the Care Sheet and Diet section above, there are a few things in your table you need to change.

That substrate should not be used. It’s too dry, and contains limestone bits that make them want to eat it. I would change it to coco coir, fine grade orchid bark, or cypress mulch.

I would get your humidity up to 60-80%, seeing as this is still a young tortoise. You may have to build some sort of cover for the table. Be sure you also have a humid hide.

You should be using a terra cotta saucer as a water bowl. It’s a lot easier for them to soak in and get into.

Keep in mind that as an adult, your tortoise will require a minimum enclosure size of 8x4 feet :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Tom

astridthetortoise

New Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
23
Location (City and/or State)
Hertfordshire
Hi, I’ve looked at the care sheet even where it says available in the store and none of those foods are available at the stores near me, it is an American website i think?

Thanks for advice.. how do I get humidity levels up and what is a humid hide and how do I make one? Yes the table has a cover just not been pictured .
 

Blackdog1714

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 30, 2018
Messages
4,503
Location (City and/or State)
Richmond, VA
Check asian/hispanic marts nearby they should have the cactus pads. I keep Mazuri (black bag) on hand for the winter feeding. They also love pansy's just make sure to repot if you add plant to shelter
 

astridthetortoise

New Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
23
Location (City and/or State)
Hertfordshire
Hi guys I’m really struggling! I’ve looked everywhere and can’t find anything in this post ☹️ I checked for endive, escarole, mustard greens etc. And all other suggestions. I managed to get baby leaf lettuce which is planted, and a spring mix . Any other ideas?
 

RosemaryDW

Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Feb 17, 2016
Messages
3,994
Location (City and/or State)
Newport Coast, CA
In the UK you should be able to find corn salad/mache, I believe? And surely radish tops?

You can add a supplement such as NutraZu Tortoise Diet or Pre Alpin Testudo pellets. These will ensure she gets the fiber she needs, along with other nutrients. You should be able to obtain one or both of these from Shelled Warriots in the UK. You can also check for ZooMed in a local store.

The Tortoise Table is a plant database and website built and maintained in the UK. The database describes wild and storebought greens in terms of whether they are safe to eat. It doesn’t tell you where to find foods, just helps you know what is safe and what isn’t. Even without a garden there may be foods growing around you in the spring and summer that are safe. Something to think about down the line. https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/
 

Kelly.324

Active Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2018
Messages
136
Location (City and/or State)
Durham UK
Hi, I’m in the UK too. I’m pretty new to tortoise ownership but this is what I’ve been feeding my Russian. Hopefully in the summer his diet can be more varied but for now I’m feeding him a mix of the following;

Florette crispy salad bag (like £1 from any supermarket), lambs lettuce and chicory as a base.

And then I add in a variety of the following (so he gets these maybe twice or thrice a week in rotation)
Sprout leaves
Carrot
Chard
Frisée
Kale
Watercress
Coriander
Edible flowers (violas from a mixed salad bag for £1.50 from Waitrose)
A few Komodo pellets (to increase fiber)
Pak Choi (very occasional)
Cucumber (once a week)
Any other form of lettuce, again not too much, the living ones from sainsburys are good and he likes to climb on them.
Beetroot leaves and radish tops
Cress

I tend to shop in Sainsbury’s, Lidl, and occasionally Waitrose and all of the above are easy to get from those shops.

I try to pick edible weeds when I can but I’m still not great at identifying them. I have started to grow my own though from a batch of seeds I ordered from Shelled Warriors.

Hope that helps. Although I’m by no means an expert, I’m sure someone with more expertise could help more or critique what I’m feeding.

And as someone has already suggested, the tortoise table and shelled warriors are really useful websites. The tortoise table also has a good app that I use when shopping.

[emoji4]
 

astridthetortoise

New Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
23
Location (City and/or State)
Hertfordshire
Hi, I’m in the UK too. I’m pretty new to tortoise ownership but this is what I’ve been feeding my Russian. Hopefully in the summer his diet can be more varied but for now I’m feeding him a mix of the following;

Florette crispy salad bag (like £1 from any supermarket), lambs lettuce and chicory as a base.

And then I add in a variety of the following (so he gets these maybe twice or thrice a week in rotation)
Sprout leaves
Carrot
Chard
Frisée
Kale
Watercress
Coriander
Edible flowers (violas from a mixed salad bag for £1.50 from Waitrose)
A few Komodo pellets (to increase fiber)
Pak Choi (very occasional)
Cucumber (once a week)
Any other form of lettuce, again not too much, the living ones from sainsburys are good and he likes to climb on them.
Beetroot leaves and radish tops
Cress

I tend to shop in Sainsbury’s, Lidl, and occasionally Waitrose and all of the above are easy to get from those shops.

I try to pick edible weeds when I can but I’m still not great at identifying them. I have started to grow my own though from a batch of seeds I ordered from Shelled Warriors.

Hope that helps. Although I’m by no means an expert, I’m sure someone with more expertise could help more or critique what I’m feeding.

And as someone has already suggested, the tortoise table and shelled warriors are really useful websites. The tortoise table also has a good app that I use when shopping.

[emoji4]

Thank you! This is very helpful. I already use some of these but the edible flower idea is really good. Where can I get chard and sprout leaves? Do you leave your live lettuce pot in your tortoise table? I didn’t know wether I should because of maybe fertiliser in the soil.. and she’s still quite little so probably wouldn’t be able to climb in . Thanks so much for your help
 

astridthetortoise

New Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
23
Location (City and/or State)
Hertfordshire
In the UK you should be able to find corn salad/mache, I believe? And surely radish tops?

You can add a supplement such as NutraZu Tortoise Diet or Pre Alpin Testudo pellets. These will ensure she gets the fiber she needs, along with other nutrients. You should be able to obtain one or both of these from Shelled Warriots in the UK. You can also check for ZooMed in a local store.

The Tortoise Table is a plant database and website built and maintained in the UK. The database describes wild and storebought greens in terms of whether they are safe to eat. It doesn’t tell you where to find foods, just helps you know what is safe and what isn’t. Even without a garden there may be foods growing around you in the spring and summer that are safe. Something to think about down the line. https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/

Hi, no corn salad or mache.. I’ve never heard of that, unless they are maybe called something different here. Thanks for the link I will have a look! Thank you !
 

Kelly.324

Active Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2018
Messages
136
Location (City and/or State)
Durham UK
Thank you! This is very helpful. I already use some of these but the edible flower idea is really good. Where can I get chard and sprout leaves? Do you leave your live lettuce pot in your tortoise table? I didn’t know wether I should because of maybe fertiliser in the soil.. and she’s still quite little so probably wouldn’t be able to climb in . Thanks so much for your help


Sprout leaves I tend to get from a proper old fashioned green grocers or the market. These places are great for tortoise food I’ve found, however, I don’t always get a chance to go as I’m, like most, at work all week.
I’ve put the living lettuce in, I figured if they’re okay to eat then the soil should be okay but some may disagree. It’s not something I feed often though.
Chard tends to be in those pre-prepared salad bags from sainsburys etc.
The Komodo pellets are just from pets at home but shelled warriors online also sell a variety of supplements and pellets.

I tend to just have a good wander around the veg and salad sections with the tortoise table app open on my phone and anything I come across that I think he could eat I search it on the app to check before I buy it. I find it means he can have a bit of a variety. But as I said I tend to use chicory,lambs lettuce and the florette crispy salad as a base and add other bits each day.
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
59,328
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Also look for "rocket" or "rocket salad". We call it arugula over here.

And be aware that most tortoises aren't too keen on new and novel foods at first. They may need to see it a few times, and you may need to slowly mix in tiny amounts of the new stuff with old favorites to get them to eat it. Its worth the time and effort. Tortoises need lots of variety.
 

Kelly.324

Active Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2018
Messages
136
Location (City and/or State)
Durham UK
Thank you! This is very helpful. I already use some of these but the edible flower idea is really good. Where can I get chard and sprout leaves? Do you leave your live lettuce pot in your tortoise table? I didn’t know wether I should because of maybe fertiliser in the soil.. and she’s still quite little so probably wouldn’t be able to climb in . Thanks so much for your help

Hi, just wondering how you’re getting on? Have you managed to get the different foods people have suggested?
 
Top