B-TFO-1 aka Chelonian History V

cdmay

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Unless Jim went a 2nd time since 2009, that was the same 2009 trip I put together for myself, Jim, and Reza, In 2009 we did not go to Namibia. Will


Ah, so YOU were the guy! Still, I'm pretty sure Diego told me he went to Namibia--or was supposed to?
 

Kapidolo Farms

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I'd have rather augmented Chelonian History I in that thread, but it is now closed. I found in a 1994 REPTILES magazine an article by Ellen Nicole, which is her story of her sulcata program, which had some first reproduction (egg laying) in December 1991. Thanks to 'cdmay' for bringing this to our attention.

Will
 

cdmay

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Will said:
I'd have rather augmented Chelonian History I in that thread, but it is now closed. I found in a 1994 REPTILES magazine an article by Ellen Nicole, which is her story of her sulcata program, which had some first reproduction (egg laying) in December 1991. Thanks to 'cdmay' for bringing this to our attention.

Will

December of 1991? Huh, I was wrong then...I thought she had reproduced them a good deal before that time.
 

Tom

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The first CB sulcatas I ever saw were also in '91. They may have been around a little sooner than that, but that's the first I saw them here in SoCal.
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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Tom, I just mailed a copy of an old article to Ken. Next time you guys chit chat, ask him about it, and I can mail it to you as well. Here's a pic of the first page (which is a copy of a copy)...

ImageUploadedByTortForum1383089792.896433.jpg

If anyone would like a copy, I'm happy to snail mail it to you. It's 12 pages. Very interesting.
 
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Sulcata_Sandy

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Cowboy_Ken said:
Well heck fire, that should prove to be a fun read. Thanks.

I dropped it in the mail this morning. It's missing a page, I suspect I left it in the copier at work.


You and your BFF Tom can giggle like school girls over the outdated data
 

cdmay

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The International Zoo Yearbook??? Wow, I used to get that every year from Ralph Curtis Books!
The 1979 edition, #19 is a classic 'must have' for reptile keepers.
 

Kapidolo Farms

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Kaplan's article in the vet network is wholly identical to an article she published in Retile and Amphibian Magazine Oct 1996. That could be the date that article appeared in the vet network as well? The first issue of CC&B from November of 1993 contains the Lambert article, is referenced by Highfield, but not Kaplan. In the R&A Mag Kaplan issue is an editorial insertion with an abstract of Lambert's work in CC&B.

Sterns also had his speaking topic about sulcata in the 1988 IHS proceedings which suggest they are probably near the same content, but perhaps not format as the text for ZooBiology.

Lambert's Literature Cited in CC&B is the most exhaustive I have seen, and includes wild and captive neonate and hatchling observation papers by Mahmoud and El Naiem 1988 and 1986

Stearns is potentially the source of the 'dry method' and too much protein dogma, if I recall a conversation with him correctly. However this will be revealed in the article that from ZooBiology and/or IHS.

Can you copy it into a pdf, and just use the attachment feature on TFO to share the ZooBiology article. I have posted several articles this way.

The folks in that first Chelonian History I, linked to the Tortuga Gazette, has the Jamison's breeding sulcata in 1987, for hatching, eggs laid for Nicole in December 1991 would have hatched in 1992. So, Tom there is high possibility the ones you saw in 1991 if captive, were Jamison's babies or imports.

Will
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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I don't have a good way to PDF the Stearns article. My laptop kicked the bucket. So I'm limited to an iPad...and admittedly I like it that way.

PM me your snail mail address and I will mail you the article.
 

Tom

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Sulcata_Sandy said:
Tom, I just mailed a copy of an old article to Ken. Next time you guys chit chat, ask him about it, and I can mail it to you as well. Here's a pic of the first page (which is a copy of a copy)...



If anyone would like a copy, I'm happy to snail mail it to you. It's 12 pages. Very interesting.

Please email. I'd love to read that. Just form the first page, I can tell you its outdated though. We have a member here with several sulcatas bigger than that. I know of a female bigger than that.
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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Ok, I know have the Stearns article scanned and in jpeg format.

If you haven't already received an email from me, please email me at sandyj.mcarthur (at) g mail

I will send you the article tonight.
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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Cowboy_Ken said:
Morning, could you email me the article as well, please? My Rhino Rescue received the hard copy and they are being overly protective of it.

(Rolls eyes)


Your me.com addy bounces. Email me and I will attach and reply.
 

Kapidolo Farms

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Nice to see the thread about history is being used to confirm personal communications! My phone, email, PM and all those other ways to communicate are best used here too. As you two, Ken and Sandy, are so many thousand miles apart from each other I fully understand this is the only way to chat. See, I think that is as funny as what you are doing. Bumping the thread with non thread content, good job!

Back to the topic at hand, as best as can be done for the closed threads in the series. I got the Stearn's article from Sandy (Thank you), and he talks about many factors contributing to pyramiding in sulcata, and observes that newsprint might be a better substrate than pellets, for the cause that the pellets are higher in protein. At least this is the speculated conclusion, he does not say that it was ever observed that the neonate or hatchling sulcata actually ate the pellets. Environmental humidity is not addressed at all. He does mention he soaks twice a week. He reports the IHR bred sulcata in 1983.

Stearn's, my former boss at the Chaffee Fresno zoo (Sean McKeown) as well as many other have all suggested that high protein diets are deadly to tortoises, based on people who routinely feed large amounts of dog food. I agree with not feeding Dog food to tortoises 100%, but that is not to say they should be held back from eating greens and some small amount of animal matter or 'complete' protein as a regular partial diet component in a varied food source diet.

I think holding back from a varied diet including some amount of complete protein sources is just as incorrect, as feeding dog food.

I'll see if any past student from the ASPin-situCC will be willing to create a thread about their on going field work for another B-TFO, which at this point would better be placed in a CONSERVATION of chelonians thread, if only we had such a topic for this forum.
 

Cowboy_Ken

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Will, you are correct. Sandy and I regularly get together to have our nails and hair done, but at those times, we only really chat about the soaps.
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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Will, do you know off hand where keepers/researchers originally decided protein was ok in an herbivore? Or did they not fully realize most tortoise species are obligate herbivores?

It seems bordering upon asinine to feed a tortoise dog food, or any high protein meal. A researcher, observing I'm the field, would likely see a species such as a Sulcata, grazing. Are you aware if early keepers experimented (and not inferring in a cruel way, just meaning test feeding) high protein diets, even plant sources, such as legumes and alfalfa hay. I noticed in pictures/videos of Richard Fife's facility he has stacked bales of Alfalfa. While I would feed that to a Redfoot, I would not feed it to a Sulcata...but we know that now, maybe not 50 years ago when tortoise keeping really started to take interest in the US.

I apologize, I didn't mean to hijack this thread, I was posting contact info to obtain a pertinent article people subscribing to this topic might be interested in.
 

Kapidolo Farms

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I imagine, that as herbivores and carnivores are made up of the same stuff, muscle, bones etc. it was more a matter of "if it's OK for the dog, why not the tortoises?" - "it's at the grocery store and easy", but these ideas as you suggest go back 30 - 40 - 50 years.

In the intervening time people like Fife came up with newer great ideas, that had been discouraged, due to the swing in ideology to the side of "protein is bad".

Tortoises do kill and eat small animals, even sulcata, and they most certainly eat the feces of pretty much any animal who dared to poop in their neck of the woods, or desert.

Dried alfalfa is ok in moderation, wet, growing alfalfa in abundance. All that water in the live plant makes a difference. When the plant dries it is different than when it is wet, by concentration.

Another aspect of the diet that was looked over by many, including myself is the benefit of long fiber and other things that allow the tortoise to maintain proper gut transmission time.

Long fiber to me, for the longest time sounded like huge carbon chain molecules, but that is not what is meant. Other roughage is like seeds and seed hulls in the diet, of virtually every species of tortoise. Either or both function similarly, but the long fiber seems to have meet universal utility. I do not have Redfoots, but I'll tell you that the Forsten's I have do eat in very different ways (amount and frequency) that seems to be based on how much dried wetted or green grass gets mixed into their food, not to mention that their feces change from meal to meal with that amount of grass. They also seem to intentionally eat the seedy parts of offerings when the grass content is low.

I think that as long as hydration and gut transit substrates are readily available that there can be higher protein content. Digestion is a production assembly line for growth, turning it off and on creates it's own problems.

I have corresponded with some of the dog food feeders from the late 60's and 70's and they say the tortoises had a shorter life, but grew faster and still reproduced a large allotment of offspring. That sounds to me like a life style adaptation that would be why tortoises have persisted through a few major extinction events.

So protein in and off itself is not bad or part of a bad diet, but it can be if the overall diet is not well balanced and the gut transmission substrate is withheld.

I use the "chicken feed" that Stern's mentioned with just those two words. He followed the work of Kay Booth, either directly or indirectly.
Kay used chicken food since sometime in the 1950's.

Since then the chicken food formula has improved and so has its effect of tortoise growth. Kay's book is copy-written so not suitable to post here. Maybe it will be reprinted. It is more a romantic recall of her life with raising tortoises than some sort of 'hard core' care book, but it has much value for the articulate/critical reader. I met Kay a few times and that, like when you meet Ken for your nail salon sessions, brings life to the writing of someone.
 

Sulcata_Sandy

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I sorta have a problem with that thought process...again, researchers would be out in the field, observing, and I'd surmise they already know they are reptilian and not mammalian, so would eat more like a bird or a lizard...then observing again different species of tortoises...their behavior, routine, feeding style and preferences and see some are inherit grazers, some go for leaves and bushes, others nibble on bugs and snails.

I wonder, at what point did we (humans in general) learn they are hind gut fermenters and many species will require more of an equine diet. I'd like to do more reading, can you recommend books, websites, articles?
 

Kapidolo Farms

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Well, then read what 'researchers' have written and not 'pet' people. If you look far enough back you will see this divide based on where the person got their intel, and how they used it, not where they published.

Old Herpetologica and Copeia have husbandry information in them. Now that is considered not appropriate for those journals.

I started out a pet person, went and ruined that perspective with academic influence, and now tend to be a researcher. But that is more a thought process, and less a way/where of communicating.

But I still read as much as I find, as both perspectives provide insight.

Go to google scholar and use the key words that interest you. Or use a pdf search tool like http://www.doc-live.com/ and do the same thing. This search might get a mix of both pet and researcher type writings. Here the criteria is that you can download a pdf file, not that the work is peer reviewed, though these criteria are not mutually exclusive.
 
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