Annoying

duffield9

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Male Russian won’t leave female alone they have been together for 6 years but has been very aggressive past month is this just a trying to mate phase how long will it last ? I would hate to separate after all this time
 

ZenHerper

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Short answer: it won't stop.

Tortoises are not social animals. In addition to the sexual component, he will continually have the impulse to dominate her in terms of territory and resources (food, water, burrows, etc.). As the only other tortoise in sight, he will fixate on her day after day...

Unfortunately, you are seeing why it is recommended to NOT keep two tortoises living in the same enclosure.
 

duffield9

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Short answer: it won't stop.

Tortoises are not social animals. In addition to the sexual component, he will continually have the impulse to dominate her in terms of territory and resources (food, water, burrows, etc.). As the only other tortoise in sight, he will fixate on her day after day...

Unfortunately, you are seeing why it is recommended to NOT keep two tortoises living in the same enclosure.
My understanding Herman male and female can be kept together these 2 have been together for 6 years thanks though
 

ZenHerper

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My understanding Herman male and female can be kept together these 2 have been together for 6 years thanks though
In a very large territory, one male with two or more females can fare better (with the caveat that any one animal can develop dominant fixation on any other animal)...but two just does not work out unless the space they live in is large enough for them to not cross paths with regularity.
 

Sarah2020

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Sadly it will only get worse. Tortoise are very happy solo. The female can get stressed and there's a risk of a bite too leg or eye. It is tough but it is for their safety unless you can offer 2 separate enclosures so they continue life separately under your care.
 

Toddrickfl1

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Male Russian won’t leave female alone they have been together for 6 years but has been very aggressive past month is this just a trying to mate phase how long will it last ? I would hate to separate after all this time
You should separate them. It wouldn't be good to subject the female to that constant harassment.
 

zovick

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Male Russian won’t leave female alone they have been together for 6 years but has been very aggressive past month is this just a trying to mate phase how long will it last ? I would hate to separate after all this time
In spite of them being together for 6 years, neither tortoise will care if they don't see the other one for the foreseeable future. They are not humans, they do not have human emotions and they don't need friends or playmates to be perfectly happy.

You asked for help with your problem and have received good advice here. It would behoove you to do what has been suggested.

Perhaps the two are just reaching sexual maturity and that is why the male is attempting to exert dominance now when he hasn't in the past. Unfortunately, though, the sexual urges of male Russian Tortoises are strong and not reversible. The problem will most likely continue until they are separated or the females becomes stressed enough by the male to die.

You could try getting a couple more females if you insist on keeping them together. That way, the male cannot concentrate on a single female constantly and the stress will be lessened.
 

wellington

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My understanding Herman male and female can be kept together these 2 have been together for 6 years thanks though
Your understanding is completely wrong. Separate them asap. He will bother your female to illness or death. Tortoises do not want to live with another tortoise. They mate or fight and move on.
 

Tom

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My understanding Herman male and female can be kept together these 2 have been together for 6 years thanks though
I don't know how that came to be your understanding, but its not correct. Tortoises should never be housed in pairs, and no, they have not gotten along all this time. They managed to survive a bad situation. They should never have been together, and they should not be together now. This is torture for the submissive one, if its even a female.

Also in your first post you said Russian, and in the above quoted post you mention hermanni. Which do you have?
 

duffield9

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In spite of them being together for 6 years, neither tortoise will care if they don't see the other one for the foreseeable future. They are not humans, they do not have human emotions and they don't need friends or playmates to be perfectly happy.

You asked for help with your problem and have received good advice here. It would behoove you to do what has been suggested.

Perhaps the two are just reaching sexual maturity and that is why the male is attempting to exert dominance now when he hasn't in the past. Unfortunately, though, the sexual urges of male Russian Tortoises are strong and not reversible. The problem will most likely continue until they are separated or the females becomes stressed enough by the male to die.

You could try getting a couple more females if you insist on keeping them together. That way, the male cannot concentrate on a single female constantly and the stress will be lessened.
Thanks yes we will separate appreciate the help
I don't know how that came to be your understanding, but its not correct. Tortoises should never be housed in pairs, and no, they have not gotten along all this time. They managed to survive a bad situation. They should never have been together, and they should not be together now. This is torture for the submissive one, if its even a female.

Also in your first post you said Russian, and in the above quoted post you mention hermanni. Which do you have?
horsefield technically but I thought all same Herman or Russian ty for information
 

Tom

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Thanks yes we will separate appreciate the help

horsefield technically but I thought all same Herman or Russian ty for information
Horsfield and hermanni are two different species. You are correct that the care and feeding is the same, but these two species should never been mixed.

You should post pics and we can ID them for you to make sure you've got what you think you've got.
 

duffield9

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Horsfield and hermanni are two different species. You are correct that the care and feeding is the same, but these two species should never been mixed.

You should post pics and we can ID them for you to make sure you've got what you think you've got.
Horsefield and Herman are different? So nickname Russian applies to which?
 

TammyJ

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Well. Whether or not all the good advice here was actually appreciated, I think it would certainly "behoove" all of us to pay close attention to it!
 

MsParedes

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Well. Whether or not all the good advice here was actually appreciated, I think it would certainly "behoove" all of us to pay close attention to it!
I read most posts, and love what you just said. Some people post here to have their way of thinking or doing things, validated, not to be disagreed with.

Before I found the knowledgeable people here, I had my sulcatas together, for a long long time (I'm embarrassed to say). I thought they "loved" each other and would miss the other if apart. After reading a "don't keep them together" thread, I thought mine were the exception. My thinking was I live on 2 acres and my enclosure is roomy, 3000 sq ft, plenty of space for everyone, right?
In the spirit of keeping an open mind, I went out and sat in the yard for an hour. I witnessed the male bullying the female, severely, and that was only in the short time span of an hour. I was shocked.
That afternoon, the wall went up.
Both tortoises are so much more relaxed.
If you all have not been told today, thank you for the experience you share daily, without expecting anything in return.
 

zovick

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Does this “keep separate” rule also apply to 3 toe box turtles?
I am not an expert on Box Turtles, but I would say yes, it does. Male Box Turtles can be just about as aggressive as the tortoises are when breeding season comes around.

Any Box Turtles experts out there wish to chime in on this?
 

ZenHerper

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Does this “keep separate” rule also apply to 3 toe box turtles?
The vast majority of reptile species are non-social, spending their days alone for the greater percentage of their lifetimes. Water turtles can be seen as somewhat communal (they have to be where the water is), but terrestrial turtles are primarily solitary in the wild.

Two individual reptiles of a solitary species are always at high risk for fixating on one another in a captive enclosure.

Groups of three or more are safer, but obviously require more land that is 'scaped with lots of places to stake out a sustaining territory for each individual.

For beginners or those who don't have the space/resources to suddenly expand to separate habitats when trouble jumps off, it is best to keep a single terrestrial turtle pet.

There is starting to be some interesting research on how reptiles in close captive quarters stress each other (males in particular), and how that stress affects their overall development and welfare:

 
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