Help thin shell

tristanlook67

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Hi I got a hatchling sulcata tortoise for my mom for mothers day and I've realised his she'll feels extremely thin especially his plastron I can feel it pop in slightly when I pick him up I have a heat bulb and a uvb bulb I alternate in the same lamp the heat bulb for about 11 hours and the uvb for about 3 hours I keep a low dish of water in at all times as long as soaking him for about 10 minutes every couple days, I keep him on Cyprus mulch but later today I'm gonna try switching it to a mix of Cyprus mulch and eco earth any advice on the ratio I should use would be greatly appreciated, I feed him about 95% clover from my back yard and about 5% dandelions I sprinkle some calcium powder with d3 on his clover every other feeding but he usually ignores the calcium as much as possible I also have a few small pieces of cuttle bone around his enclosure. Please help me with any advice you could possibly give I just want to provide the best care possible
 

Odin's Gma

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Pictures of your set-up will aid the people here in assisting you, along with info on the temps in the enclosure. I can tell you that grasses should be the primary food in the diet at approx. 60-70%, with the remaining 30-40% being made up up assorted weeds and other plants. Clover and dandelion are great choices, but the more varied the diet the better chance they will get all the nutrients they need. High enclosure humidity is also key for prevention of pyramiding.
 

tristanlook67

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uploadfromtaptalk1440859642039.jpg
The piece of bark is dug down for a burrow underneath and the side away from the lamp is covered by the lid to the container to provide shade away from the heat
 

tristanlook67

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Pictures of your set-up will aid the people here in assisting you, along with info on the temps in the enclosure. I can tell you that grasses should be the primary food in the diet at approx. 60-70%, with the remaining 30-40% being made up up assorted weeds and other plants. Clover and dandelion are great choices, but the more varied the diet the better chance they will get all the nutrients they need. High enclosure humidity is also key for prevention of pyramiding.
What are some of the other foods that would be best to mix in also I've tried giving him a small amount of Mazuri tortoise diet but he has no interest in it
 

Odin's Gma

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wellington

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The enclosure is too small, the water dish is too small, the amount of time you have the UVB on is too little, if you are using a coil bulb, they are bad. The substrate, is okay, but coconut coir would be better for a little one. The diet needs a lot more items added. They need temps of 80 with humidity of 80% and a basking spot of 95-100. Please read Toms threads below in my post and make all the appropriate changes ASAP.
 

wellington

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They are bad because they cause eye problems and even blindness. A mercury vapor bulb or a tube fluorescent. Because your tort has already suffered from lack of UVB, I would get the mercury vapor bulb and also get him outside for some natural sunlight, with water and shade available.
 

Alaskamike

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You've gotten good advice.

Thin shell or soft plastron ( underside) is a sign your baby is not getting the nutrients needed ... Or cannot properly metabolize them - or both.
Tricks you can try with food :
Take what he likes and chop it up with other varied greens
This also works with a few pieces of Mazuri. Wet it, then chop it up so it sticks to the chopped greens.

Don't give your baby the same thing everyday. I would stay away from Kale. It can be eaten but is high in oxalates which can block calcium absorption. At this age he doesn't need vegetable - he needs grass, flowers , weeds chopped up.
The care sheets have dozens of readily available greens listed. A product called " Organic Spring Mix" is sold here , I've used it with success when I can't just get what I need from the yard.


Put a little flat rock or piece of paving tile in there and feed him on it.

Helps keep the beak trimmed down.

I'm sure all the rapid recommendations here seems a bit overwhelming , but
 

Merrick

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You've gotten good advice.

Thin shell or soft plastron ( underside) is a sign your baby is not getting the nutrients needed ... Or cannot properly metabolize them - or both.
Tricks you can try with food :
Take what he likes and chop it up with other varied greens
This also works with a few pieces of Mazuri. Wet it, then chop it up so it sticks to the chopped greens.

Don't give your baby the same thing everyday. I would stay away from Kale. It can be eaten but is high in oxalates which can block calcium absorption. At this age he doesn't need vegetable - he needs grass, flowers , weeds chopped up.
The care sheets have dozens of readily available greens listed. A product called " Organic Spring Mix" is sold here , I've used it with success when I can't just get what I need from the yard.


Put a little flat rock or piece of paving tile in there and feed him on it.

Helps keep the beak trimmed down.

I'm sure all the rapid recommendations here seems a bit overwhelming , but
About the first part it is not always a sign of lack of nutrirnts or metabolizing them young tortoises have pliable plastron even in perfect conditions
 

wellington

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It's more a sign of lack of UVB. It's only been getting three hours of it a day. Way too little
 

wellington

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In this case, I would actually have to say both diet and lack of UVB. With using very little time under the UVB, it's almost like not getting any, as we all know, the lights are no where near as good as the sun. Three hours under a bulb will basically do nothing.
Getting him under the bulb longer and better yet, outside for at least an 1/2 hour each day, maybe an hour if possible, keeping a close eye on him, so he doesn't over heat, making sure he always has water and shade and improving the diet should help greatly.
 

tristanlook67

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Thank you all for the help I will try to at some point this week get him a bigger tub I was thinking one of those round plastic kiddie pools, I will try to find another uvb bulb and add another lamp so I can get him more uvb along with taking him outside,I will raise the humidity and let him graze in the yard while he is outside, I will give you all an update in the future thanks again for all the help
 
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