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Golden Greek hatcling odd behavior

Discussion in 'Greek tortoises' started by gaiasteinberg, Jul 27, 2019.

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  1. gaiasteinberg

    gaiasteinberg New Member

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    Hi I'm Gaia, I'm 14 years old, and I live in the Western United States. I adopted a Golden Greek Tortoise hatchling a few days ago from tortoisetown and she refuses to eat or drink. I also noticed this morning that it seems she is having difficulty breathing. I want to make sure everything is ok.

    Last year I had a Russian Tortoise who I adopted at age 5 and she passed away due to an upper respiratory infection that she appeared to already have when we adopted her. She also didn't eat or drink very often and I want to make sure that I will not be going through the same trauma with my Golden Greek as I did with my Russian.

    Please respond!!
  2. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    We need to know about your enclosure and setup. Pictures will help. Temperatures being wrong is the usual cause of health and eating problems.

    Babies like this need steady heat (85F day and night) and high humidity with a basking spot that has 95-100F directly underneath it. It must be completely dark at night, so as well as the basking bulb and UVB, you also need a Ceramic Heat Emitter used with a thermostat to keep temperatures steady.

    I recommend you and your parents read the TFO care guides and compare them with your setup.

    They're written by species experts working hard to correct the outdated information widely available on the internet and from pet stores and, sadly, from some breeders and vets too.

    Beginner Mistakes
    http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/beginner-mistakes.45180/

    Baby Testudo Tortoise Care (written about Russians, but applies to Greeks)
    http://www.tortoiseforum.org/thread...or-other-herbivorous-tortoise-species.107734/
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  3. Ben02

    Ben02 Well-Known Member Today is my birthday!

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    Can we have some pictures of the tortoise?
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  4. SweetGreekTorts

    SweetGreekTorts Well-Known Member

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    Have you also contacted Tortoise Town? If the tortoise has not been active or eating since you received it, it's very possible they sent you an ill or poorly-started tortoise. They aren't a breeder, they buy babies in bulk from people, then turn around and resell for profit. There's no knowing if the person who hatched your baby soaked it every day, fed the right foods, provided the correct lights, temperatures, etc.

    We will do our very best to help you, but Tortoise Town should also know what's going on with your baby.

    Definitely give the care sheet that was posted earlier a read and make any adjustments needed. Photos of your baby was also requested and would be very helpful to us. Photos of the enclosure would also help us.
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  5. gaiasteinberg

    gaiasteinberg New Member

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    I emailed tortoisetown and tried calling but they are closed for the weekend. I wanted to take her to the vet but I'm not sure if we have a suitable reptile vet where I live. The two things I am missing with her enclosure from what you've said is a basking spot and complete darkness at night. Her enclosure is in my room, so would it be ok for me to get a sort of cover to put over her enclosure when it gets dark? If this is not a viable option, do you have any other recommendations?

    Here are two pictures of her living enclosure, one from above and one from the side. The light is on a timer so it switches on and off without my doing. The food is her dish was from yesterday and the white powder on it is her reptile supplement, calcium with vitamin d3. I also have a thermometer and humidity gauge in the corner so I can see the temperature and humidity levels. I out cardboard around the sides so that she would not attempt to escape as my last tortoise did. I have a ceramic heat pad on the side of her enclosure, but I think I may have to move it to the underside of her space. Also, I noticed that her shell resembles more of an Ibera Greek Tortoise than a Golden Greek Tortoise.
    IMG_3450.jpg IMG_3451.jpg IMG_3453.jpg IMG_3454.jpg
  6. katieandiggy

    katieandiggy Well-Known Member

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    Hi Gaia,
    You say you don’t have a basking lamp? Reading your temperature 77 is not nearly hot enough. The basking spot needs to be 90-95. Tortoises need to be able to warm up to be able to digest food properly. You need to get a basking lamp asap and get the temperature directly under the lamp between 90-95.
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  7. gaiasteinberg

    gaiasteinberg New Member

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    I am going to go get a basking lamp right now. I was unaware that 77 wasn't hot enough before I came to this forum because all the other sources I did research on said to keep it between 70-80. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.
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  8. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    That enclosure is far too dry as well . Please read the links I posted. You need to raise both temperature and humidity.
  9. counting

    counting Well-Known Member

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    @HermanniChris has an excellent greek tortoise care guide posted at the top of the greek tortoise forum. You need to scroll a bit to get to hatchling care as it is very comprehensive- but it has been my bible for keeping my baby.

    As others have said, your baby can not warm up enough to eat and digest food without a basking space, and the bedding looks extremely dry. I actually use organic "black earth" soil as it holds moisture really well and is super cheap.

    Do you have any source of uvb?
  10. gaiasteinberg

    gaiasteinberg New Member

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    I ordered a lot of new equipment yesterday and it should be arriving very soon. I followed the Russian Tortoise guide(that also appplies to Greeks) @JoesMum sent me and it has been extremely helpful. I will send pictures once it is all set up.
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  11. puffinboots

    puffinboots Member

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    Try giving it some warm sunlight, if you can, they love that & it does them good.
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