Andromeda the Aldabra Tortoise

Chefdenoel10

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I was about to mount the 300w radiant heat panel when I finally found an oil radiator short enough to fit in the box. It cost only 15 euros so I figured I can use the RHP for my sulcata indoor setup. Maybe it's too big for a baby sulcata, I have to research some more.

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@Tom was right (again). When I was using the ceramic heater fan the floor temp had a 4C (40F?) difference from the ceiling, which made me believe I somehow messed up the box insulation. Now the difference is less than 1C.
The humidity was 10% lower on the ceiling, now it's the same.
Lastly, it is ON for 20% longer but burns 50% less electricity, therefore, it is also more economical.
It's not even debatable; oil radiator - ceramic heater 3-0

Now on to cosmetics. I noticed that one of his nails is broken and discolored and he has a small scratch on the plastron but I suppose these are not something that time won't fix.

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The poop looks healthy, it is sticky, neither dehydrated nor diarrhea. I never thought the day would come when I would be thrilled to pick up poop:D!

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Here he is going to town on the mallow plant growing in his enclosure. He eats that same plant every day but he can't keep up with its growth. These plants start growing now and reach 8 feet or more by July. They overpower all other weeds and take over the fields.

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Until next update, take care friends!
how absolutely stunning his home is!!!
Wow!!!
I want to live there!
I love the front porch where he can hang out and watch the sun set before going inside... terrific job!!!
 

Tolis

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how absolutely stunning his home is!!!
Wow!!!
I want to live there!
I love the front porch where he can hang out and watch the sunset before going inside... terrific job!!!
Thank you so much, your kind words bring joy to my heart. The animal welfare officer came yesterday to inspect (normally they are supposed to inspect prior to giving you an import license) and he asked me to adopt him as well! 😆
A few months ago this was an empty plot. I salvaged the birds of paradise from a construction job and replanted them there. Most cinder blocks are also construction leftovers. I am slowly preparing more enclosures next to that one that will house the rest of my dream tortoises if I ever manage to buy them. I am dreaming of a group of radiated, a few cherry heads, Burmese/Indian stars, pancakes, the bucket list is never-ending! :tort::tort::tort:
 

Tolis

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What is the white stuff all over the ground around the door in this picture?
Just some gravel I used to make a ramp. I thought it would be pretty but its definitely not functional therefore I secured the wooden pads on top of it. He can go up and down the ramp now but it must be a good exercise for those tiny elephant legs
 

NorCal tortoise guy

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Thank you so much, your kind words bring joy to my heart. The animal welfare officer came yesterday to inspect (normally they are supposed to inspect prior to giving you an import license) and he asked me to adopt him as well! 😆
A few months ago this was an empty plot. I salvaged the birds of paradise from a construction job and replanted them there. Most cinder blocks are also construction leftovers. I am slowly preparing more enclosures next to that one that will house the rest of my dream tortoises if I ever manage to buy them. I am dreaming of a group of radiated, a few cherry heads, Burmese/Indian stars, pancakes, the bucket list is never-ending! :tort::tort::tort:
Sounds like we have very similar dream haha
 

Tolis

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Hello, friends hope you all had a nice weekend. The little guy is healthy and always hungry. He must have never tasted opuntia before because he can't have enough of it! He also likes all kinds of flowers growing in our garden, bougainvillea, geranium, snapdragon, I just check on the tortoise table and if it's safe I feed it.

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It was a green weekend for us. I planted lots of edibles so I don't have to buy greens especially when he is a 400-pound eating machine.

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I have no idea what's in the package. There were various sizes of seeds. I will post some pics when they start growing.

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I planted lots of spineless (allegedly) opuntia cactus.

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A couple of vines

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A total of 9 hibiscuses around the property

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A mulberry tree

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Spoiler of the new enclosure currently under construction

That's all for now. See you on the next update!

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Tolis

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A bit chilly today there's no sunshine but that doesn't stop us from enjoying a classic favourite hibiscus buffet after a warm soak. He put on 15 grams in the past 15 days.

Following aldabramans temp guide that he resently posted as closely as I can. Fortunately for now we still get a few hours every day above 65F. He has not figured out yet that he must go inside when it gets cold.
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Chefdenoel10

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A bit chilly today there's no sunshine but that doesn't stop us from enjoying a classic favourite hibiscus buffet after a warm soak. He put on 15 grams in the past 15 days.

Following aldabramans temp guide that he resently posted as closely as I can. Fortunately for now we still get a few hours every day above 65F. He has not figured out yet that he must go inside when it gets cold.
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ALL of it!.....
STUNNING!
Just .....STUNNING!!!!
I am sooooo jealous!
Now I want to be a tortoise just to get this house! 🤪
Keep up the fantastic work!
She must be soooo happy!
You’re the best tort dad ever!!!
Congrats.🎊🎉🎈🍾
 

Tolis

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I installed a $9 eBay infrared camera to check his movement at night. I assume with the night temps I keep between 23,5-25C (74.5-77F) he should be chilling in the corner and not be banging on the walls. I will let it run a few nights and share the results here. He is quite suspicious of the little black eye that infiltrated his box...

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His appetite is impressive. If he keeps eating like that he will join me at my next dietician visit :)
 

Tolis

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I see some adult Aldabras on Instagram from places like Indonesia with very shiny beautiful shells (the environment and conditions in this country are of course ideal and could play a role) and some others that turn grey from years exposed to the elements and dirt.

I am not sure if cold-pressed organic coconut oil will help in this regard and I would never risk using a controversial practice just for cosmetic reasons but after reading this I got convinced on using it occasionally on my torts.

 

lazybfarm

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I use coconut oil on my Aldabras about once a month , just enough to moisten the shell . I take a microfiber cloth and using my finger , just touch the oil, and then rub it on the shell. It doesn’t take much . 👍
 

TammyJ

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He is lovely. Keep him away from the dog, please. Again - Tom is right!!!
Where is his pool?
 

Sue Ann

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This is the little dude/dudette. He is exactly 2 years old according to the seller. As I expected he sees the devil in me and always tries to hide or run away from me. He never feels comfortable eating when I am around. In the 4 days that he is here I have seen him eating a couple of hibiscus flowers (he always goes for the pollen first it must taste good) and mallow growing in his enclosure. He could be munching on the alternanthera bush he is hiding in all day long as far as I know. He seems healthy, hopefully, he will soon stop being afraid of everything, not because I want to pet and hand-feed him but because stressing is bad for his health.

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Here he is next to Dexter, his Jack Russell older brother. As you can see Dexter was helping me paint the torts night box :p
Very bad idea to have the dog with your tort. I had a jack and they are fast. Dogs and torts not good mix
 

Tolis

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He is lovely. Keep him away from the dog, please. Again - Tom is right!!!
Where is his pool?
I have put quite some thought about the dog...
I apologize for using the term "terrible dog trainers". I tried to edit that out when I read it but was too late🙄
Tom is right. My dog has hunting and territorial instincts. He feels no empathy for the pain of other creatures and often kills lizards and plays with the corpses. However, he has been living with tortoises for 8 years and never harmed them. He once cought a stray cat in the yard and by the time I got home the cat was dead. I don't own a cat but I know for sure if I brought a cat home he would accept it as another pack member and cuddle on the sofa together. I believe he considers torts as live stock and he is the shepherd. I even ask him to help me find torts hiding in the bushes when I can't find them. He doesn't take it as an invitation to attack them.
Now, will I wake up in a year from now and find him chewing on a tort? Maybe! Extremely unlikely but you never know! But for now, his long clean sheet earned my trust.
If I get a new dog I would never leave it unattended with torts especially when it's a puppy. Dexter was over 1 year old when introduced to torts. I took them out of the box and layed them on the grass. He freaked out and began barking to them. I said "No-No Dexter..see?" and gently rubbed their shells. He briefly sniffed them and got back to playing fetch in no time. He understands that he must be gentle to them because for some mysterious reason the humans- his pack leaders, like them.
Sam Pascucci and @ALDABRAMAN have german shepherds, it would be nice to know how cautious they are with their smaller tortoises.
 

Tolis

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Very bad idea to have the dog with your tort. I had a jack and they are fast. Dogs and torts not good mix
I am so sorry for what has happened to your tort. I can imagine, the feeling must be terrible. Mine is a menace too he's 9 and still very active and playful.
 

Tolis

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He is lovely. Keep him away from the dog, please. Again - Tom is right!!!
Where is his pool?
The pool is on it's way! :):p we get middle east summers here so it is a must. The location in mind is next to a lemon tree for shade. I plan on copying the tort ponds of primitive predators youtube channel. Basically it's a pvc pipe drain, cement pond then a layer of food grade insulation coating used for swimming pools and river stone for traction.

I don't know if I need a mudhole, a pond or both.
I have searched the forum for wisdom and ideas but only found turtle ponds.
 

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ALDABRAMAN

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I have put quite some thought about the dog...
I apologize for using the term "terrible dog trainers". I tried to edit that out when I read it but was too late🙄
Tom is right. My dog has hunting and territorial instincts. He feels no empathy for the pain of other creatures and often kills lizards and plays with the corpses. However, he has been living with tortoises for 8 years and never harmed them. He once cought a stray cat in the yard and by the time I got home the cat was dead. I don't own a cat but I know for sure if I brought a cat home he would accept it as another pack member and cuddle on the sofa together. I believe he considers torts as live stock and he is the shepherd. I even ask him to help me find torts hiding in the bushes when I can't find them. He doesn't take it as an invitation to attack them.
Now, will I wake up in a year from now and find him chewing on a tort? Maybe! Extremely unlikely but you never know! But for now, his long clean sheet earned my trust.
If I get a new dog I would never leave it unattended with torts especially when it's a puppy. Dexter was over 1 year old when introduced to torts. I took them out of the box and layed them on the grass. He freaked out and began barking to them. I said "No-No Dexter..see?" and gently rubbed their shells. He briefly sniffed them and got back to playing fetch in no time. He understands that he must be gentle to them because for some mysterious reason the humans- his pack leaders, like them.
Sam Pascucci and @ALDABRAMAN have german shepherds, it would be nice to know how cautious they are with their smaller tortoises.
~ I can't speak for Sam, however i was a professional dog handler for many years with extensive training and experience. I start my k-9's as puppies with strong conditioning techniques. I would never trust ytour dogs or any other pets around your tortoise populations, natural instincts are strong and should never be underestimated. IMG_3071.JPG
VIDEO'S @https://www.facebook.com/groups/TORTOISETALKGROUP/
 

Mrs.Jennifer

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I have put quite some thought about the dog...
I apologize for using the term "terrible dog trainers". I tried to edit that out when I read it but was too late🙄
Tom is right. My dog has hunting and territorial instincts. He feels no empathy for the pain of other creatures and often kills lizards and plays with the corpses. However, he has been living with tortoises for 8 years and never harmed them. He once cought a stray cat in the yard and by the time I got home the cat was dead. I don't own a cat but I know for sure if I brought a cat home he would accept it as another pack member and cuddle on the sofa together. I believe he considers torts as live stock and he is the shepherd. I even ask him to help me find torts hiding in the bushes when I can't find them. He doesn't take it as an invitation to attack them.
Now, will I wake up in a year from now and find him chewing on a tort? Maybe! Extremely unlikely but you never know! But for now, his long clean sheet earned my trust.
If I get a new dog I would never leave it unattended with torts especially when it's a puppy. Dexter was over 1 year old when introduced to torts. I took them out of the box and layed them on the grass. He freaked out and began barking to them. I said "No-No Dexter..see?" and gently rubbed their shells. He briefly sniffed them and got back to playing fetch in no time. He understands that he must be gentle to them because for some mysterious reason the humans- his pack leaders, like them.
Sam Pascucci and @ALDABRAMAN have german shepherds, it would be nice to know how cautious they are with their smaller tortoises.
I have an amazing, empathetic, highly trained, Golden Retriever therapy dog. She went with me to my Montessori classroom every day while I was teaching. She is highly obedient and loves to please and play. One day we were outside, and my Russian tortoise was in his raised garden bed. I was busy mulching my hostas and not giving attention to the toys she was bringing me. Then I looked up and saw that she had brought me the tortoise she had plucked out of his enclosure. She was so smart and figured out the “toy” that I would drop everything for. Fortunately, she came and laid him gently at my feet. Golden Retrievers are bred to retrieve and carry things with a gentle mouth, but it’s still a powerful jaw. To her, it was a game. There was no malice in it. However, it could have been a disastrous “game.” I used to be in the “It‘s okay because it’s my dog” category. Never again...
 
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