Hatchling died??? :( (new user)

Hywel

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Hello, sorry if this isn't the right spot to post this but im so devastated right now. I got a hatchling Sulcata Tortoise from 'underground reptiles' few weeks ago and thought I was doing everything right up till now. My biggest mistake was I'd assume in being a newbie is that he arrived with a soft shell, which I assumed must have been normal with a hatchling, reasoning that babies are born with soft heads so something similar must happen with baby tortoises... Anyway He was in a 40 gallon filled 1-1 1/2 inches of a mix of coco fiber and potting soil, a large water dish that he could get in and out of as he pleased, two hides (one a by the heat lamp and one in the coolest end of the tank), a lamp with a flat rock under to bask in (around 95-100 and 70-80 on the other end), and a 'sulcata mix' of grasses and clovers growing in the tank him to eat (and trample). He was doing fine but this week he's hasn't been eating as much, then he wouldn't really open his eyes, and just a few minutes ago i went to mist the tank and found him lifeless in the shallow water of his dish... Is there a reason he was so soft and was there anything i was doing wrong??? I was so excited to start my journey with a wonderful lifelong friend but I feel like i've completely completely failed him before anything really started. I would really appreciate some advice and maybe a point in the direction of a better breeder as I don't feel comfortable giving underground reptile money after this experience. Sorry for rambling!
 

Mikki

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Hello, sorry if this isn't the right spot to post this but im so devastated right now. I got a hatchling Sulcata Tortoise from 'underground reptiles' few weeks ago and thought I was doing everything right up till now. My biggest mistake was I'd assume in being a newbie is that he arrived with a soft shell, which I assumed must have been normal with a hatchling, reasoning that babies are born with soft heads so something similar must happen with baby tortoises... Anyway He was in a 40 gallon filled 1-1 1/2 inches of a mix of coco fiber and potting soil, a large water dish that he could get in and out of as he pleased, two hides (one a by the heat lamp and one in the coolest end of the tank), a lamp with a flat rock under to bask in (around 95-100 and 70-80 on the other end), and a 'sulcata mix' of grasses and clovers growing in the tank him to eat (and trample). He was doing fine but this week he's hasn't been eating as much, then he wouldn't really open his eyes, and just a few minutes ago i went to mist the tank and found him lifeless in the shallow water of his dish... Is there a reason he was so soft and was there anything i was doing wrong??? I was so excited to start my journey with a wonderful lifelong friend but I feel like i've completely completely failed him before anything really started. I would really appreciate some advice and maybe a point in the direction of a better breeder as I don't feel comfortable giving underground reptile money after this experience. Sorry for rambling!
I'm a newbie as well. My little one is 5 months old. I know my little one was not soft shell when i got her. I also have heard of hatchlings not thriving and hatchling death syndrome. It sounds like you were doing good and read up on what you were suppose to do. Did you soak your baby every day for 30 minutes? I have heard soaking is a big thing with babies so they don't dehydrate. I'm wondering if that's why your baby was in the water. I'm so sorry you had to go through this. My heart goes out to you. I do know you can find breeders on here. Lol through the forums and i did believe one is for breeders. Where do you live. Ohh i also know some of the uv light bulbs are not good to use. I don't know which ones you had but the coil ones are not good and i believe the tubes are not good. I only know this by reading the care sheet that's on here
 

AgataP

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I am so sorry to hear this. I think our sulcata experts are possibly sleeping but I am sure they will get back to you.
Things you can do you could post images of the enclosure.
Are you 100% sure it is dead ?
Have you noticed any yellow bumps on your tortoise?

I will tag few people they might help you with some answers.
@mastershake @Tom @Yvonne G

Sending you a big hug!
 

Hywel

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Houston
Yeah I meant to mention in my initial post but i was soaking him twice a day for 15-20 minutes in warm water. Not that long because I always felt bad watching him try to get out of the deli cup I was soaking him in. I'm in texas considering getting a new baby from tortstork. Also the light i was using is a Zilla 100 watt 'day white light'. Aside from that I was taking him outside and sitting in the grass with him for 25 minutes to an hour for him to soak in natural sunlight and eat grass.
 

mastershake

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did you notice any yellow spots or blister like bumps? sadly underground has been shipping babies with this and honestly this was most likely (almost for sure) not your fault. many of the cases of the sick babies are coming from them more i think then anywhere else. if yours had the same as the other ones we are seeing there would not have been anything you could have done anyway. its sad. but please ask before getting another one so we can send you to someone who has healthy and well started babies that will thrive with proper care. @Tom has awesome babies here. was it the bottom of the shell that was soft or the whole thing? when they are this age the bottom will always be a bit softer.
 

KarenSoCal

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Welcome to the forum. I'm so sorry that it's because of something so sad.

Your care sounds like it was great. Your baby died because the breeder kept him too dry immediately after hatching. The dehydration did irreparable damage to his kidneys. His fate was sealed at hatching...nothing you could do would save him.

This is what happened:

And this is how he should have been kept:

Did you see any yellow spots or bumps on him? This is a separate issue from the kidney disease. We have been seeing these bumps on baby sulcatas lately, and are doing research on it.
 

mastershake

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@KarenSoCal i would be more inclined from underground to think this was more related to the same issue we have been seeing honestly. just because the bumps are not visual yet doesnt mean they were not already infected with them they take a few weeks from what we are finding to show up. but yeah they could have been a poor start also. well more then half of all the cases i know of are from underground now.
 

Hywel

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Messages
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Location (City and/or State)
Houston
I am so sorry to hear this. I think our sulcata experts are possibly sleeping but I am sure they will get back to you.
Things you can do you could post images of the enclosure.
Are you 100% sure it is dead ?
Have you noticed any yellow bumps on your tortoise?

I will tag few people they might help you with some answers.
@mastershake @Tom @Yvonne G

Sending you a big hug!

Yeah he did have a big orange/yellow bump/spot on his neck but I honestly assumed it was skin peeling or something.
And yes he's passed and not reacting at all to me.

Here's what his tank looks like with a water bottle for size reference. Sorry my camera is bad lol
 

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Mikki

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Yeah I meant to mention in my initial post but i was soaking him twice a day for 15-20 minutes in warm water. Not that long because I always felt bad watching him try to get out of the deli cup I was soaking him in. I'm in texas considering getting a new baby from tortstork. Also the light i was using is a Zilla 100 watt 'day white light'. Aside from that I was taking him outside and sitting in the grass with him for 25 minutes to an hour for him to soak in natural sunlight and eat grass.
On the care sheet it did say if you we're able to get natural sun light an hour a few times a week you really didn't need the UV bulb. This is what it says above the UV. It tells what bulbs are no good. For the heating it really says a 45-65 incandescent flood bulb. I have a spot bulb which it says don't use so i just bought the incandescent one yesterday.. Let me copy the link to the care sheet for you
 

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AgataP

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Yeah he did have a big orange/yellow bump/spot on his neck but I honestly assumed it was skin peeling or something.
And yes he's passed and not reacting at all to me.

Here's what his tank looks like with a water bottle for size reference. Sorry my camera is bad lol

I know this might be a bit much for you but if you still have your hatchling could you take a picture of the “bump” ?
 

Hywel

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Welcome to the forum. I'm so sorry that it's because of something so sad.

Your care sounds like it was great. Your baby died because the breeder kept him too dry immediately after hatching. The dehydration did irreparable damage to his kidneys. His fate was sealed at hatching...nothing you could do would save him.

This is what happened:

And this is how he should have been kept:

Did you see any yellow spots or bumps on him? This is a separate issue from the kidney disease. We have been seeing these bumps on baby sulcatas lately, and are doing research on it.
This is a photo of the yellow spot/bump on him that i took the day i got him. I posted to r/tortoises on reddit asking what it was but never got a reply.

20200831_001803.jpg
 

KarenSoCal

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@KarenSoCal i would be more inclined from underground to think this was more related to the same issue we have been seeing honestly. just because the bumps are not visual yet doesnt mean they were not already infected with them they take a few weeks from what we are finding to show up. but yeah they could have been a poor start also. well more then half of all the cases i know of are from underground now.
I know. But the other symptoms sound like hatchling failure...closed eyes, soft plastron...
 

mastershake

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if they had those spots they almost for sure would have passed soon anyway i do not know of any that are still alive with them except 2 we have who are going downhill the past few days also. edit there are 2 others but they dont look very good. this is a big problem and those spots are HIGHLY contagious. you may need to dispose of everything they touched. the only 2 known ways to kill this is with straight ammonia and high heat over 165 f for around 15 min straight. if you use ammonia you need to let it sit wet for 10 min then re spray for another 10 min then again . continue to clean as much as possible and ANYTHING they touched that cant be cleaned like this needs to go in the garbage. i highly recc everything being disposed of though sadly.
 
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KarenSoCal

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This is a photo of the yellow spot/bump on him that i took the day i got him. I posted to r/tortoises on reddit asking what it was but never got a reply.
That's what we're talking about. How long did you have your baby? When did you receive him?

@Pastel Tortie This one came from Underground.
 

Mikki

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did you notice any yellow spots or blister like bumps? sadly underground has been shipping babies with this and honestly this was most likely (almost for sure) not your fault. many of the cases of the sick babies are coming from them more i think then anywhere else. if yours had the same as the other ones we are seeing there would not have been anything you could have done anyway. its sad. but please ask before getting another one so we can send you to someone who has healthy and well started babies that will thrive with proper care. @Tom has awesome babies here. was it the bottom of the shell that was soft or the whole thing? when they are this age the bottom will always be a bit softer.
Isn't there any thing that someone can do to shut them down. How many hatchlings so far do you know of that's happened to? Omg I'm so upset reading this. Sounds as bad as a puppy mill shipping sick dogs. I really hope the experts can do something about this place
 
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AgataP

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if they had those spots they almost for sure would have passed soon anyway i do not know of any that are still alive with them except 2 we have who are going downhill the past few days also. this is a big problem and those spots are HIGHLY contagious. you may need to dispose of everything they touched. the only 2 known ways to kill this is with straight ammonia and high heat over 165 f for around 15 min straight. if you use ammonia you need to let it sit wet for 10 min then re spray for another 10 min then again . continue to clean as much as possible and ANYTHING they touched that cant be cleaned like this needs to go in the garbage. i highly recc everything being disposed of though sadly.

Should things that will go in a garbage soaked in ammonia anyways ?
Possibly to avoid this disease going onto rats, cats any other garbage eaters.
Possibly maybe we could have a proper disposal of the items thread?
 
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