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the_dude_abides

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Dec 28, 2013
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Howdy. For my first post i wanted to introduce myself (I'm Kris) and our new Tortoise. We have been wanting a sulcata for a while now, and we finally jumped in after some extensive research and discussion for at least a month leading up to the purchase.

My wife and i have been married for almost 5 years, we have two little girls 3 and 4 years old. They are tortoise fans big time. We live in northern CA, about 15 miles north of Sacramento.

We purchased the little tort from a reptile shop in Roseville, CA on Dec 20th 2013. He's/She's a Sulcata and approximately 3 months old. We named him Aleister Crowley, and all has been going great so far.

Eating fescue and clovers from the front lawn, until his seed mix comes from sulcatafood.com. Soaking daily, eating daily, and my wife gets him out of his table to run around either in the living room and/or the yard to graze as much as we can. He gets a lot of face time with us, he seems to like hanging out with my wife when we are all in the living room doing various activities. Aleister always has his head up and out trying to see the goings on in the room. Its pretty cute that he's so curious.

As far as setup goes, I think i did pretty well on the first go around. 50/50 organic top soil and coconut, with a little orchard grass hay mixed in. 100w Mercury Vapor Heat/UV bulb. I keep a corded temp probe mostly in is hide, but i move it farily often from heat side to cool side to keep tabs on the temps all around the pen. Trying to keep it between 75 and 85 degrees F. Hotspot under the lamp is about 90. I am still playing with the light positioning, but he seems to be happy with the temps. I havent seen him drink water very much on his own, so i keep everything nice and moist. However, he will sip water here and there during a soak.

Lurking on tortoise forum has been a great resource for me, and the best piece of advice i can take away from reading here and other sulcata sites is NEVER listen to the pet stores lol. Literally everything they told me was incorrect. But i just smile and nod, and say "ok thanks for the info", and continue searching for products with the forum/internet pulled up quick draw style on my phone.

Open to suggestions from experienced owners, couple things I'm trying out is the slate under the lamp, and the exact positioning of his hide. I also want to use more coconut and less top soil next time, and i will most likely nix the grass hay for now all together as a substrate.

So without and further adieu, here's Aleister crowley!

Setup:
kvGN8F2.jpg


Curious little guy (or gal):
zcTZoRW.jpg


Baskin':
niL6Jlg.jpg


Having a Soak:
MqpJYJz.jpg


First Night:
UUCZlyU.jpg
 

Yvonne G

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Hi Kris:

Welcome to the Forum!

Won't be too much longer and Mr/Ms Crowley won't be able to fit through the door to his hide. :p

Buy some sphagnum moss, moisten it, and pack it inside the hiding place. Then occasionally re-moisten it. As you've been reading while lurking, you know that a humid environment raises a smooth sulcata!
 

diamondbp

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Welcome. Yvonne is right, he won't fit in that hide for much longer lol. Good luck with everything
 

the_dude_abides

New Member
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Dec 28, 2013
Messages
17
Yvonne G said:
Won't be too much longer and Mr/Ms Crowley won't be able to fit through the door to his hide. :p

Buy some sphagnum moss, moisten it, and pack it inside the hiding place. Then occasionally re-moisten it. As you've been reading while lurking, you know that a humid environment raises a smooth sulcata!

Its a small opening for sure, I have a plan to make the entrance larger. If that doesnt work then i will make something custom. I try to moisten Al's substrate daily and especially under his hide, but I will look into the moss and where to get it. That seems like an extra step for safety kind of deal and i dig it! Thank you for the warm welcome.
 

wellington

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Hello and Welcome:). Please read Toms threads below in my post for proper housing to grow a smooth sully
 

the_dude_abides

New Member
Joined
Dec 28, 2013
Messages
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wellington said:
Hello and Welcome:). Please read Toms threads below in my post for proper housing to grow a smooth sully

Thanks! Also, i have and will probably read again and again!
 

Barista5261

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Nov 21, 2013
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Location (City and/or State)
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Hello and welcome, fellow Sulcata owner! Got one little cutie there!

One idea for when Al's hide gets too small, is get one of those black dish tubs with the handles on them, flip it upside down, and cut a door in it for him. As he gets bigger, you can keep cutting the hole bigger to accommodate your growing little beastie [SMILING FACE WITH OPEN MOUTH]
 

the_dude_abides

New Member
Joined
Dec 28, 2013
Messages
17
I forgot to post temps and humidity...in case anyone was wondering. I also thought I should mention that where i live the average humidity is about 82%. Low is summertime in the 60% range. Highs for the year report in at a little above 90%.

~95 deg F in basking spot with 37% humidity

~81 deg F in hide with 90% humidity

~73 deg F cool side with 78% humidity
 
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