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Any cactus connoisseurs?

Discussion in 'Tortoise Diet and Food' started by TooCrunkForLinnaeus, Nov 23, 2018.

  1. TooCrunkForLinnaeus

    TooCrunkForLinnaeus New Member

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    75582C61-8246-4E24-8CEC-B13B4BD29853.jpeg Found this at a local Mexican market. They were only .25 cents each. Does it look like it’s from the Opuntia family? If so,how would you recommend to prepare it? Thanks!
  2. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Yep.
    That's this all grown up

    Attached Files:

  3. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Some people including myself cut off the spines.
    A lot of folks do not. Pointing out the fact that wild tortoises eat it all the time.
    You can also jam about 1/3 of the pad in some soil and grow a whole cactus plant.
    The one in the photo was just 1 pad four years ago
  4. TooCrunkForLinnaeus

    TooCrunkForLinnaeus New Member

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    Wow! Very nice Zeropilot. Looks like you have a self sustaining supply! Thank you very much for the info!
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  5. Cowboy_Ken

    Cowboy_Ken Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Yet are there any native tortoises where these cactus grow?
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  6. TooCrunkForLinnaeus

    TooCrunkForLinnaeus New Member

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    Yes. Gopher and Desert torts both have ranges that contain Opuntia cacti.
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  7. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    That's been my theory as to why I don't want my poor Redfoots mouths full of spines.
    Especially when it's so easy to remove them.
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  8. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member

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    Chaco and Galapagos tortoises too.
  9. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member

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    Yes, and opuntia has been introduced to multiple places all over the world. In Madagascar some of the farmers line their fields with the fully spined "regular" opuntia. The native tortoises there just walk right up and eat it, spines and all, with no problem.

    After seeing that, I don't bother removing the little spines or glochids from my cactus any more and its never been a problem after several years of feeding it out that way.
  10. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member

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    Yes it is spineless opuntia. To prepare it, simply drop it into the enclosure. For a pad that size, if you are feeding hatchlings or small babies, you can cut off a slice so they can get to the softer innards.

    Store the pad somewhere out in the open with good ventilation. Don't keep it in a bag of any kind and don't refrigerate it all. The cut part will scar over and you can cut a new part each time. A pad will last for months as long as you don't put it in a bag or the fridge.
  11. Maro2Bear

    Maro2Bear Well-Known Member Today is my birthday!

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  12. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    For babies I take a potato peeler to the pad. In my experience babies have a hard time biting through the hard skin.
  13. RosemaryDW

    RosemaryDW Well-Known Member TFO Supporter

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    I just slice off a piece and give it to my adult Russian; no special handling.
  14. Cowboy_Ken

    Cowboy_Ken Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    That’s what I’ve been known to do when I’m living too poor to buy gas for my hand held torch.
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  15. SPILL

    SPILL Member

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    I'm afraid of little ones choking so I put slices in a food processor with some dried herbs and/or grasses and blend until it resemble guacamole. It causes a feeding frenzy, but if they walk through it they need cleaned immediately or substrate and sphagnum clings to them.
  16. DeanS

    DeanS SULCATA OASIS 5 Year Member

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    The problem with market cactus is that it's often preserved with diluted lemon or lime juice. Best to drive around until you see someone growing what you like then offer to 'prune' their plant a little! On the other hand...I've given @Tom about 20 pads from two different ssp of opuntia and he has worked some miracle plants! Safe to say...I should be set for life! Seriously though...next visit to Tom's...I actually plan to do an article on his cactus!
  17. DeanS

    DeanS SULCATA OASIS 5 Year Member

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    I slice 'em thin and I pulverize 'em in the food processor for daytime nourishment...but I also leave 'em intact overnight...the 'work' is great exercise for them
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  18. drew54

    drew54 Well-Known Member

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    I just mix a small piece in the blender. I tried leaving a half pad in the enclosure, but she never touched it.
  19. DeanS

    DeanS SULCATA OASIS 5 Year Member

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    GOOD POINT! Sometimes the pad will not give off a scent...try slicing it or pulverizing it...or even breaking it in half...will change the playing field...big time!
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  20. drew54

    drew54 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you! I'm going to do that now and see what happens. I didn't think about the scent in this case.
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