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How often do baby sulcatas sleep during the day??

Discussion in 'Sulcata tortoises' started by chris8695, Apr 1, 2010.

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  1. chris8695

    chris8695 New Member

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    hi everyone! i recently brought in a baby sully home. i have always been a snakes and lizards guy. so this is my first "non-meat/insect eating" reptile. and i think he is very cute. now, as the title, how often do they sleep during the day? cux mine spends half of the time sleeping during the day. i wonder if that's normal. i have him/her in a 20gal long glass aquarium. it has a basking spot of low 90s(air) and 115F(surface). on the other end of the tank, i have a water dish under a 60w night bulb with around 80F(air) and 70F(water). in the middle of the tank, it's around 65F-68F and i live in sacramento, ca, that's the room temp i have right now. there are pics of him/her attached below. thank you for helping me out. i am so glad that i brought him out. he s been so much fun.

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  2. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer Staff Member

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    Hi Chris:

    [​IMG] to the forum!!!

    Babies sleep a lot. I usually get the babies up in the morning and set them in some warm water to soak while I'm preparing the food. Then I place the food in the habitat and put the baby in front of it. I like to have the food station at the opposite end from the sleeping area. After the babies eat, they go into the hide and you might not see them the rest of the day. This is perfectly normal, because baby tortoises are prey and stay hidden quite a bit.
  3. Scooter

    Scooter Guest

    Welcome to the forum! I also have a new baby sully. Just a warning once you start with tortoises you never stop, they are more addicting than snakes or lizards lol :)
  4. motero

    motero Member

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    Ditto, my two baby Sulcatas are hiding and sleeping 85% of the day.
  5. tortoisenerd

    tortoisenerd New Member

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    Awww thanks for sharing those photos. Very cute! I agree that babies sleep a lot. As long as my hatchling was up and about every day to eat and bask, I considered that normal. One suggestion I do have on the enclosure is to add more hides. Make sure you have cooler and warmer ones. Also, 115 is a bit hot. I'd go no more than 100 at the surface. Keep in mind at the top of the shell it is even hotter than that too. What kind of water dish is that? If you feed on a piece of slate tile, it helps wear down the beak and nails. For your next enclosure, I'd recommend a tort table (wood open top box) or plastic tub as they are better with temperature gradients and so the tort can't see out. Best wishes.
  6. chris8695

    chris8695 New Member

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    thanks guy. thank you for calming me down. how big of a yard do i need for two sullies? cux i m already thinking about getting another one. haha. sure that they are addicted.

    tortoisenerd: i tried to provide him two hides. but the 20gal tank is apparently not big enough for everything. do u think i can take out the water dish if i soak him 15-20 min everyday? and that water dish is just a regular reptile water dish you can get at pet stores. i just put some rocks and gravels with it for him to enter and out of the pool easily.

    there are more pics of him that i just took today. i love him so much. haha

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  7. Scooter

    Scooter Guest

    He is adorable! I love the picture of him on the rocks, he looks like a mountain climber lol
  8. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    His shell looks beautiful. Keep him humid, like you are, and it should stay that way. I think 115 is just right for a sulcata. I keep the surface areas of my basking spots anywhere from 100-120 for sulcatas. I used to keep my sulcatas and leopards without water dishes. If you soak every day you don't really need one, but I like to have it in there anyway. It keeps it more humid and it may help with hydration.

    Last, and most important, thing is SUNSHINE. Get them outside as much as you can. I like to build a safe little enclosure for them. Yvonne (EmysEmys) recently started a thread about outdoor enclosures. Here it is for some ideas: http://tortoiseforum.org/thread-13514.html
  9. tortoisenerd

    tortoisenerd New Member

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    If it were me, I would get a smaller water dish to take up less space, and use a smaller hide so you have space for several (even fake plants or boxes work great) in different temperatures, as hatchlings do spend a lot of time hiding and you want to make sure they can have at the very least a warm hide (like right next to the basking spot), a cool hide (coldest part of the enclosure), and a moderate hide. Plan to upgrade the enclosure size very soon. For two Sulcatas, you need A LOT of space. I highly recommend you see how this one goes when it gets big before getting a second one as it is hard to predict how much graze they need, etc. Tortoises are solitary species, so you would need to plan for two enclosures (likely 4 so you can let some of the land recover from the grazing, unless it is a very very huge yard), with the best case scenario being they get along. No way to be 100% on the sex as babies even with temps, and even female-female pairs don't always get along. Next batch of substrate I would use less sand. If you move that plant down closer to the surface witht he leaves dragging I'd count it as a hide. Best wishes.

    Oh, and I also agree to always have a water dish. If I see the tort in there every day or every other day, after the fragile stage I wouldn't do forced soaks.
  10. Nobody

    Nobody New Member

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    If I may ask,at what age do baby Sulcatas start spending more time outside of their hide and become more active?Also,when Sulcatas become older,do they become less shy and become more people friendly?
    Thanks.
  11. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    There's not an exact answer for this. It depends on their individual personality, the treatment they've had, and their size. They all get bolder and more outgoing as they get more comfortable with their keeper and their surroundings. They all get bolder as they get bigger too.

    To encourage them to be more outgoing I like to hand feed them their favorite foods. Once they begin to associate you with their favorite foods, they will come running every time they see you. The hungrier they are the better this will work.
  12. maggie3fan

    maggie3fan Active Member

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    chris8695...hi and welcome!!! I would change his substrate and use something that doesn't require sand. I usually recommend cypress mulch or orchid bark. I use both right now, they each hold the moisture well and they reduce the chance of impaction because you're not using sand. Sand sticks to the food and gets in their eyes and because it sticks to the wet food you run a risk of impaction with the sand...
  13. CELLMASS

    CELLMASS New Member

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    sup dude. nice tort. mine is a juvenile, he also sleeps a lot. i was at the zoo today and they had galapigoes (horrible speller) and they were huge. the also had sulcata that were probably in the 150 pound territory. and they were all out roaming around. so i guess its safe to say TOM is right as well as everyone else. i took pictures of both..... but dropped my camera and broke it, so now i have to wait to upload the pics. i saw an alligator snapper and he was bad a$$. i want to get one.
  14. chris8695

    chris8695 New Member

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    thanks everyone. thanks for all your help. after taking advices, i have given him a new home. i think i m spoiling him. hehe^^

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  15. FWishbringer

    FWishbringer New Member

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    My little one sleeps maybe 4 hours during lights on, broken into ~1 hour naps. My friend's, who's is from the same clutch, doesn't sleep during lights on at all.

    Regarding 115F, according to all available research, is too hot. Some cook their sulcatas at that temp and report no illl effects, others have issues with dehydration. Remember they can get dehydrated easily, and is the leading cause of hatchling failure syndrome. That hot dehydrates quickly. I keep my baby at 95F.

    Since you said surface/air, are you using belly heat? If so, it can lead to several deformities. I'm using very minimal belly heat to maintain a stable warm/cool, but its very low power (I have the heater under my plastic enclosure, if that means anything). Some do well with only belly heat for hatchlings, others develop deformities. Just something to keep in mind.

    Your new setup substrate looks like it has coir in it, based on the 'strings' I see. If it is indeed coir, I would recommend against it. My little one liked to try and nibble on the strings, and I had to deal with a minor case of impaction. I'd hate to know what could have happened if I hadn't switched substrate.

    That said, congrats on the new one. Don't spoil them above your budget (good advice for any new pet, really).

    One more question... that plant you have behind the log in the bottom picture, has it been verified safe to eat? If so, I have some growing around our fishpond..
  16. CELLMASS

    CELLMASS New Member

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    i got to put some pennies iin here. the sahara desert reaches temps of like 120 degrees. all reptiles need to heat there blood up. if you have low heat it could result in poor circulation. 95 dergress is good but lil babies in the sahara thrive in 120 degree conditions.
  17. TortieLuver

    TortieLuver Active Member

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    Nice setup Chris! I was wondering the exact same thing when I purchased my first two. I was concerned that something was wrong. However, they are still little and do sleep quite often.
  18. ekm5015

    ekm5015 New Member

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    Yea...it gets to 120 degrees in the sahara, but that doesnt mean thats ideal. Sullies have learned to dig very deep tunnels to get out of the heat. 95-105 is ideal in my opinion for baskin and 80-85 for the rest of the pen.
  19. LadyGreek

    LadyGreek New Member

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    AHHHHH!!!!! All you Sulcata parents are REALLY tickling my toes about adopting my very own Sully baby!!! We are already thinking about getting another Tortoise, but I wasn't sure if I wanted another Greek or what, but with all these SUPER cute Sulcata babies around here it's making the choice rather easy. Plus we have a beautiful backyard it would LOVE!!!:D

    Sorry I threw this comment in here....I just needed to vent. LOL!:p

    Kendra*
  20. shmily1605

    shmily1605 New Member

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    I agree with you...Im no expert tho :p. The hatchlings stay underground which is cooler than 120 and offers the hydration they need. Since they are not out in the wild being hunted by predators, they see no need to be underground so it is our job to offer the humidity they need along with a temp they would see in their burrows. Just my thinking on it. I could be wrong. ;)
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