1. Welcome! Are you interested in tortoises? If so, we invite you to join our community! Our community is the #1 place for tortoise keepers to talk online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your tortoise and enclosure, and discuss any tortoise topic with other tortoise keepers. Get started today!

Hello! I'm a new member and I'd like some help with my new friend Issac.

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Pyro, May 18, 2017.

  1. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    Nice.
    I kept reading about some people saying they grow to 8 and some say they grow to 5 or 6
  2. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    Thanks! Some people say they grow to 8 and some say they only grow to 5 or 6 inches.
  3. Eduardo Hernandez

    Eduardo Hernandez Member

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    Males stay smaller than females. Females can grow up to 8 inches, males are around 5-6 inches.
    SarahChelonoidis likes this.
  4. teresaf

    teresaf Well-Known Member

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    Show a pic of plastron and tail area with tail visible and perhaps we can tell you the sex of your new friend.
  5. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    I can try. He likes to hide is tail. I believe he is male though. He has a pretty long tail.
  6. Grandpa Turtle 144

    Grandpa Turtle 144 Well-Known Member

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  7. RosemaryDW

    RosemaryDW Well-Known Member TFO Supporter

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    Welcome!

    Great Russian you've got there. Just so you know, imported Russians, what you usually find a pet stores, are imported to this county when they are around four to fives years of age, and just shy of puberty.

    The employee at Petco didn't know any better. That tortoise might even have come with a sticker saying it was a Greek.

    Glad you're here for help!
  8. Rachael403

    Rachael403 Active Member

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    Welcome to the forum!
  9. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    Thanks so much for the information. The employees didn't really seem to know much about him at all when I asked questions about him. They just kinda threw random information about him to me that didn't make much sense. I didn't really believe he was a Greek tortoise. I've been looking at this site ever since I got him. I'm really happy I finally posted and got all the correct information. :D I'm very grateful.
  10. TammyJ

    TammyJ Well-Known Member

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    In general for this species, how long (in years) from birth to maturity (full length)?
  11. RosemaryDW

    RosemaryDW Well-Known Member TFO Supporter

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    The answer is "it depends. :)

    Tortoise growth varies with the amount of food given, the type of food, the amount of exercise, all kinds of things. In the wild, some years there is rain and lots of plants; other years are dry and there isn't much to eat. That's why a wild caught tortoise will look a little bumpier than one bred here, their shell growth increases and decreases as a reflection of food availability. Captive bred tortoises usually have consistent food and end up with smooth, somewhat waxy looking shells. You'll notice the difference when you've been here a while and seen more pictures.

    And if tortoises live long enough, they may exceed the typical length!

    Yours may have a growth spurt now that he or she is with you and fed and housed correctly. Mine sure did!
    JoesMum likes this.
  12. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    This is really helpful. Thanks :D I'm on my way to get some food for him from the store. But I'm really skeptical on what to get. I was thinking on picking up some kale and stuff like that. I also want to find some cactus pads.
  13. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    Can Russian tortoise eat Hardy banana leaves?
  14. teresaf

    teresaf Well-Known Member

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    Spring mix is good. Especially if you pick out a lot of the spinach. Walmart has a bagged "greens trio" which is mustard kale and collard greens....
  15. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    I got some kale, Romain lettuce, and cactus pads. I was going to buy a banana leaf plant but I wasn't sure if that was good for him or not.
  16. teresaf

    teresaf Well-Known Member

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    Not sure of banana leaves. Elephant ear and hibiscus leaves are good though. The tortoise library thread has a list of edible foods. I don't believe ALOT of romaine is good for them.
  17. RosemaryDW

    RosemaryDW Well-Known Member TFO Supporter

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    You can find cactus pads at any hispanic/Mexican grocery store if you have one close by. They are in the vegetable section, labeled "nopales." You'll only need one small pad at a time for a Russian. Don't even feed that much as once, as it can cause diarrhea. Alternatively, you can order a BUNCH of them from Amazon; which you might do if you would like to plant some and grow your own.

    Here are a couple of good links for foods for sulcata tortoises. Sulcata tortoises are different from Russians in that they eat grass as well as weeds. I think these lists are some of the easiest and fastest to read on our forum, which is why I link to them even for Russians. Just cross out any food that has the word "grass" in it and you are good to go. There are some grocery store foods in here to get you started while you are learning and looking for other kinds of food.

    No matter what, remember variety is key. You don't have to feed all these foods in a month (or even a year) but switch things up around as much as you can.

    Link one: http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/sulcata-diet-sheet.64290/

    Link two: http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/for-those-who-have-a-young-sulcata.76744/
  18. Pyro

    Pyro New Member

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    I got the cactus pads. I was thinking about growing my own. Also Issac doesn't seem to like the kale xD
  19. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Having foods that are edible and persuading your tort to eat them are two different things.

    Torts are very stubborn, know what they like and like what they know.

    It takes time and patience to introduce new foods.
  20. Lyn W

    Lyn W Well-Known Member

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    Hi and welcome.
    Pet stores are only interested in profit, but you'll get great help and advice here as you have already seen.
    I've read that Russians are great escape artists and often dig or climb their way out of their enclosures so make sure your boundaries are tort proof!
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