First time tortoise owner

Cathie G

Well-Known Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Aug 9, 2018
Messages
8,817
Location (City and/or State)
Lancaster
I live in Florida it gets very hot in the summer my temp app says it feels like 103 right now..can the tortoise be kept outside for like a couple hours and live inside 90 percent of the time? I see on the care sheet that it is recommended to keep them outside most of the time..how crucial is this.
My back deck says it's 106 but Sapphire is sitting in the sun and not hiding out in his little hidey hut. That's where his outdoor enclosure is. The air temperature is 83. He's a little Russian. I only put him outside a few hours a day. I also use an umbrella over part of his enclosure if it gets much higher in temperature. The umbrella usually lowers the temperature but today it's not but he's still out enjoying the sun. I don't put him out if it's higher than that. I think the thing to be most concerned about is to get enough direct sunlight a few hours a week. That could be any time of day. He doesn't mind me hand carrying him in and out anymore.
 

Cathie G

Well-Known Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Aug 9, 2018
Messages
8,817
Location (City and/or State)
Lancaster
Ok good deal I was thinking I would have to keep him outside most of the time..I wonder why the care sheet says that...
I don't know. Maybe I've not seen that part of the care sheet. Im sure that is the best scenario but a big part of the people on TFO don't have warm weather all year so there's a lot of education here on lamps to emulate the sun and warmth. Also what variations of humidity and temps different species need for their best health. Also the best diet and when and how to supplement. I can only get my Russian out in spring summer and fall a few hours a day. It is confusing at first but at some point I'm sure it will start making total sense.🙂
 

Cathie G

Well-Known Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Aug 9, 2018
Messages
8,817
Location (City and/or State)
Lancaster
What should the floor and top of the enclosures be made out of? I'm going to use plexiglass for the sides.
I would use as much wood as you can for the sides and all. I have an open top enclosure so I use hardware cloth on the lid or topper. (Russians are really good at escaping). Glass can make it too hot among other problems. There are threads here on people's ideas for enclosures. But that's up to you in the long run. 🙂
 

Cathie G

Well-Known Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Aug 9, 2018
Messages
8,817
Location (City and/or State)
Lancaster
My back deck says it's 106 but Sapphire is sitting in the sun and not hiding out in his little hidey hut. That's where his outdoor enclosure is. The air temperature is 83. He's a little Russian. I only put him outside a few hours a day. I also use an umbrella over part of his enclosure if it gets much higher in temperature. The umbrella usually lowers the temperature but today it's not but he's still out enjoying the sun. I don't put him out if it's higher than that. I think the thing to be most concerned about is to get enough direct sunlight a few hours a week. That could be any time of day. He doesn't mind me hand carrying him in and out anymore.
I have to backtrack on the statement that it was 106 and my tort was basking in the sun. My WiFi device had picked today to take a crap. But I'm sure it was still up towards 100 at least in the direct sun. He does have hiding places to get out of the sun if he wants too. Also I know that deck and the temps and how it should be so I decided to check it because it is a device and sure enough I need a new one this time around. Thank the good Lord I do have a backup until then. That's the problem with having to depend on machines.
 

Jlsretics

Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2017
Messages
20
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago
Ok..how big should I go? Also what is an easy one to take care of that will remain pretty small
7 ft is MORE than enough room for an adult Russian tortoise, Herman's tortoise and especially an Egyptian tortoise ( those are quite expensive though). I would agree not nearly enough for a Sulcata and would prefer more for a red foot also! Now you definitely need to increase the width by at least 3 times. 1 foot won't cut it!
 

Dcatalano

Member
Today is my birthday!
Joined
Jan 22, 2021
Messages
65
Location (City and/or State)
Colorado
We used wood for our enclosure and lined the bottom with plexiglass to keep moisture from ruining the wood. It makes cleaning easier too. The sides are also wood, because plexiglass is see through and they’ll continuously try to get out/through it.
 

SLB

New Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2020
Messages
11
Location (City and/or State)
New Mexico
What kind should I get? Realistically I want the smallest one I can get..my encloser is 7 foot long by just over a foot wide.
Whatever you decide on, please buy captive-born. Research your source. Most of the Mediterranean tortoises sold in pet stores are wild-caught, and the trade puts a lot of pressure on wild populations, not to mention the stress it places on the individual animals caught.
 

Marcus1990

New Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2021
Messages
13
Location (City and/or State)
North Port Florida
Whatever you decide on, please buy captive-born. Research your source. Most of the Mediterranean tortoises sold in pet stores are wild-caught, and the trade puts a lot of pressure on wild populations, not to mention the stress it places on the individual animals caught.
Ok yea I wasn't even considering a wild caught one
 

maggie3fan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2018
Messages
5,186
Location (City and/or State)
PacificNorthWest
Ok good deal I was thinking I would have to keep him outside most of the time..I wonder why the care sheet says that...
The care sheet reads that because especially in Florida they should live outside. When they are babies living in a closed chamber inside is good, but by 2 years they should be in a safe protected area outside.
 
Top