Food Marginated tortoise hatchling

McKell

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Feb 13, 2020
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Missouri
Looking for advice on my first tortoise. He’s a 4 month old marginated. I’ve done lots of research and I want to do a really good job. I’ve found conflicting info on feeding. He is captive bred which I really sought out and his breeder said to stick with romaine lettuce, kale, and very little strawberries and other greens that are not spinach. I’ve done this so far but I’m worried about calcium. I don’t trust pet store supplements or want to do cuttlebone. Is it safe to use egg shells and how much should I use? Pic of my Terry for attention!!
 

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TammyJ

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He is beautiful! People on here with more knowledge of these will come along shortly and help you with advice re his diet and habitat. Welcome to the site.
 

LaLaP

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Hi! I don't keep that species so I had to search the forum to find an answer for you.

I found this thread that is helpful and I think the diet is that same as Russian torts which is what I keep.
You can also look at a website called tortoisetable.uk. They tend to be more cautious than us here at tortoise forum but it's great for ideas when you're new and also very good for identifying plants.
 

McKell

New Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2020
Messages
8
Location (City and/or State)
Missouri
Hi! I don't keep that species so I had to search the forum to find an answer for you.

I found this thread that is helpful and I think the diet is that same as Russian torts which is what I keep.
You can also look at a website called tortoisetable.uk. They tend to be more cautious than us here at tortoise forum but it's great for ideas when you're new and also very good for identifying plants.
Thank you I’ve been feeding what I can get from that list and ordered some seeds from Carolina pet supply for the rest
 

Tom

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Looking for advice on my first tortoise. He’s a 4 month old marginated. I’ve done lots of research and I want to do a really good job. I’ve found conflicting info on feeding. He is captive bred which I really sought out and his breeder said to stick with romaine lettuce, kale, and very little strawberries and other greens that are not spinach. I’ve done this so far but I’m worried about calcium. I don’t trust pet store supplements or want to do cuttlebone. Is it safe to use egg shells and how much should I use? Pic of my Terry for attention!!
That is terrible advice from the breeder. Romaine has little or no nutritional value, is too low in fiber, too low in calcium, and has a poor calcium to phosphorous ratio.

Kale has goiterogens and should not be fed often.

Strawberries, and any other sugary fruit, should never be fed.

Spinach is fine once in a while, just like the kale.

Your tortoise should be eating mostly broadleaf weeds, leaves, and flowers of the right types. Skip the text on this thread and scroll down to the list of good stuff to feed. Your tortoise isn't a grass eater, but the list is good for all torts. Learn to ID your local weeds. Find a good mulberry tree or two. Plant or find some grape vines or rose of sharon.

If you must use grocery store foods, favor mostly endive and escarole. Mix in arugula, cilantro, collard, mustard, and turnip greens, and much more. Also add in some herbal hay from tortoisesupply.com and several types of dried leaves from kapidolofarms.com. Round things out by mixing in some soaked ZooMed pellets or original Mazuri once in a while.
 

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