White, powdery thing on my tortoise’s beak?

BumpyTheTort

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Hey guys, I’ve learnt so much on what to feed my tortoise, what to provide for my tortoise from the forums and I thought atleast one of you might know something about what’s happening?

Today I was giving my tortoise a soak when I realised there was a white powdery substance on his beak. He soaked it off when he had a drink then he dried off and I put him back in his enclosure. About 30 mins later I noticed the white powdery thing again on his beak? I can provide pictures if necessary, but does anyone know what this is?
 

PollyAda

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Bless him. What species is he?

Is there any chance it could be calcium or cuttle bone residue? If not, do the nostrils look clear or is the white coming from that area?
 

BumpyTheTort

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Bless him. What species is he?

Is there any chance it could be calcium or cuttle bone residue? If not, do the nostrils look clear or is the white coming from that area?
Hey thank you for the reply! He’s a horse field tortoise. I’m 99% sure it isn’t calcium or cuttle bone residue. I couldn’t really say about the nostril part. Here’s a closer up picture.

D979A3F8-EDF9-4852-9F8C-848774125E25.jpeg
 

PollyAda

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It's a little tricky to tell. Sorry to keep repeating myself, but do you know what species he is?
Can I ask about your enclosure set up?
What are the enclosure temperatures (basking spot, warm side, cool side, and overnight low)? Torts can become unwell if the temperatures are too low in the enclosure. I believe signs of respiratory illness can include residue from the nose/runny nose.
 

BumpyTheTort

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It's a little tricky to tell. Sorry to keep repeating myself, but do you know what species he is?
Can I ask about your enclosure set up?
What are the enclosure temperatures (basking spot, warm side, cool side, and overnight low)? Torts can become unwell if the temperatures are too low in the enclosure. I believe signs of respiratory illness can include residue from the nose/runny nose.
It's a little tricky to tell. Sorry to keep repeating myself, but do you know what species he is?
Can I ask about your enclosure set up?
What are the enclosure temperatures (basking spot, warm side, cool side, and overnight low)? Torts can become unwell if the temperatures are too low in the enclosure. I believe signs of respiratory illness can include residue from the nose/runny nose.
Hi! Thank you for another reply, he is a horse field tortoise. His basking spot reaches about 29C - 31C, his warm side is usually around 26C, cool side about 20C or low 20s and when I turn his lamp and UVB off for night it stays at about room temperature (thinking about it I’m not sure if that’s good enough). Please tell me if I’m doing anything wrong because I want to make my tortoise live a long happy life, and I’m always accepting to being educated for doing something wrong. I’ll change anything that requires to be changed. Thank you!
 

PollyAda

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It's really positive that you've noticed something may be up with your tort and reached out for support.
I would say the temperatures are on the low side. Basking spot should reach 35-37C at shell height, so definitely adjust that and monitor with temperature gun so you can keep a close eye. Boosting all of the temperatures would be a good idea, particularly as he may be showing signs of being unwell. What do you use to heat the basking spot/enclosure?

https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/the-best-way-to-raise-any-temperate-species-of-tortoise.183131/ This care sheet gives you a run through of temps - I would not let the overnight temp go below 21C at the moment, as your day time temps aren't quite high enough. You'll need to keep an eye on this as it's been below freezing in the UK at night recently, so the temperature in your house may be dropping quite low at night.

https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/info-for-new-people-please-read-this-first.202363/#post-2037836 Have a read of this if not done so already.
 

BumpyTheTort

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It's really positive that you've noticed something may be up with your tort and reached out for support.
I would say the temperatures are on the low side. Basking spot should reach 35-37C at shell height, so definitely adjust that and monitor with temperature gun so you can keep a close eye. Boosting all of the temperatures would be a good idea, particularly as he may be showing signs of being unwell. What do you use to heat the basking spot/enclosure?

https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/the-best-way-to-raise-any-temperate-species-of-tortoise.183131/ This care sheet gives you a run through of temps - I would not let the overnight temp go below 21C at the moment, as your day time temps aren't quite high enough. You'll need to keep an eye on this as it's been below freezing in the UK at night recently, so the temperature in your house may be dropping quite low at night.

https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/info-for-new-people-please-read-this-first.202363/#post-2037836 Have a read of this if not done so already.
Thank you for the links, I’ll do a read on them. Do you have any recommendations for heating at night? I heard lots of conflicting things about the nightbulbs, that it messes with their sleep schedule or something?

And also, at the moment I use a UVB tube and a (Im trying to find an alternative, it was actually Tom who made me aware it wasn’t good enough, when I was collecting my tortoise they gave it to me for free with the tortoise table I got and for a while I didn’t know it was bad) Mercury Vapor bulb. I’m looking into buying a better heat bulb, if you have any recommendations let me know, I know this is a bit ridiculous but I genuinely didn’t know it wasn’t good for him until quite recently. Thank you for the feedback. I’ll try use this feedback to make it a better and more suitable environment for him .
 

PollyAda

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Swap out your MVB for a floodlight bulb. It will be better for your tort, and cheaper! I use a 75W and adjust the height using a stand to get the right basking temp https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/arcadia-solar-basking-floodlight

For night heat, you're right to avoid any coloured bulbs. I use a 75W Ceramic Heat Emitter (CHE) - it gives off heat, no light, so perfect for keeping ambient temps up during the day and/or using at night. Always use a dimming thermostat with the CHE as they get very hot. Place the probe directly under the CHE on the substrate and set the thermostat to the overnight low temp you want.

CHE https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/swell-ceramic-heat-emitters
Dimming thermostat https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B002SQM4OO/?tag=

You're welcome! Keep your questions coming if you're unsure of anything - if I don't answer first then someone else will jump in I'm sure.
 

BumpyTheTort

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Joined
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Messages
15
Location (City and/or State)
Kendal
Swap out your MVB for a floodlight bulb. It will be better for your tort, and cheaper! I use a 75W and adjust the height using a stand to get the right basking temp https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/arcadia-solar-basking-floodlight

For night heat, you're right to avoid any coloured bulbs. I use a 75W Ceramic Heat Emitter (CHE) - it gives off heat, no light, so perfect for keeping ambient temps up during the day and/or using at night. Always use a dimming thermostat with the CHE as they get very hot. Place the probe directly under the CHE on the substrate and set the thermostat to the overnight low temp you want.

CHE https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/swell-ceramic-heat-emitters
Dimming thermostat https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B002SQM4OO/?tag=

You're welcome! Keep your questions coming if you're unsure of anything - if I don't answer first then someone else will jump in I'm sure.
Swap out your MVB for a floodlight bulb. It will be better for your tort, and cheaper! I use a 75W and adjust the height using a stand to get the right basking temp https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/arcadia-solar-basking-floodlight

For night heat, you're right to avoid any coloured bulbs. I use a 75W Ceramic Heat Emitter (CHE) - it gives off heat, no light, so perfect for keeping ambient temps up during the day and/or using at night. Always use a dimming thermostat with the CHE as they get very hot. Place the probe directly under the CHE on the substrate and set the thermostat to the overnight low temp you want.

CHE https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/swell-ceramic-heat-emitters
Dimming thermostat https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B002SQM4OO/?tag=

You're welcome! Keep your questions coming if you're unsure of anything - if I don't answer first then someone else will jump in I'm sure.
Thank you so much for your suggestions for heating.

Do you think I should make any action about the white stuff on his beak? I looked up the symptoms of respiratory infection in tortoises and he doesn’t seem to have any of them. He’s eating well, no sulky eyes, very active - etc etc.
 

PollyAda

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Other members will suggest action if they feel it's needed, but if he isn't showing any other signs of ill health then I would monitor him closely for now. Improved husbandry will help him, whether the white substance is a sign of ill health, or not, as common husbandry errors are often the cause of a tort being/becoming unwell. The care sheets really are useful, so follow those, get the temps up, and keep us informed of how he's doing!
 

Mrs.Jennifer

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Thank you so much for your suggestions for heating.

Do you think I should make any action about the white stuff on his beak? I looked up the symptoms of respiratory infection in tortoises and he doesn’t seem to have any of them. He’s eating well, no sulky eyes, very active - etc etc.
Hello! This will probably help overall…
 

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