Hibernating??

Shesabutterfly16

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Joined
Jan 16, 2021
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9
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Aurora CO
Hello! I recently made my tortoise a new enclosure! It is awesome! It’s also much larger than the last one that he had and It includes a pretty good size hide box. I was really excited to put him in it and he enjoyed it for a few days. He had a couple feedings, had some water and then he went in the hide. I keep checking on him thinking he is enjoying the new enclosure but he is just hanging out in the hide. I look in there and notice that he does adjust himself and move in different positions within the hide so he is not dead but I don’t know if he is hibernating either. Just seems like kind of weird timing. And he only did this one other time since I have owned him. Maybe the Hide encouraging him to do hibernate? And if so how do I care for him while he’s hibernating? It is still cooler here at night but it is definitely warming up. Will the warmer weather encourage him to wake up? This is just a new thing for me and I’ve owned him over 10 years. TIA!
 

Toddrickfl1

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Tortoise Club
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Jan 7, 2018
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Hello! I recently made my tortoise a new enclosure! It is awesome! It’s also much larger than the last one that he had and It includes a pretty good size hide box. I was really excited to put him in it and he enjoyed it for a few days. He had a couple feedings, had some water and then he went in the hide. I keep checking on him thinking he is enjoying the new enclosure but he is just hanging out in the hide. I look in there and notice that he does adjust himself and move in different positions within the hide so he is not dead but I don’t know if he is hibernating either. Just seems like kind of weird timing. And he only did this one other time since I have owned him. Maybe the Hide encouraging him to do hibernate? And if so how do I care for him while he’s hibernating? It is still cooler here at night but it is definitely warming up. Will the warmer weather encourage him to wake up? This is just a new thing for me and I’ve owned him over 10 years. TIA!
He's sulking because you've changed his surroundings most likely. Are you providing heat? Your enclosure should be consistently heated to the right temperature. So there should be no reason for the tort to be brumating.
 

Shesabutterfly16

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Joined
Jan 16, 2021
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9
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Aurora CO
Really? Ok . I am using heat and a new slate stone so it should be pretty nice in the basking spot. But his old enclosure was waaaaay too small so he never had the option to get really cool. I started turning out the light at night to help in the old enclosure. This new one should have plenty of temperature variation. But I know the hide has got to be the coldest. He is a Russian tortoise.
 

ZenHerper

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Feb 27, 2020
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Reptiles have evolved in specific environments and depend entirely on those environments to run their bodily systems, including wakefulness and hunger.

You must know the exact temperatures at ground level at all points in the habitat...coldest, basking spot, ambient.

If all environmental conditions are Optimal, then he is not brumating (cold pausing) or aestivating (hot pausing).

Reptiles are highly territorial...they have a Home Base that provides security, food, water, access to mates, etc.. When they are moved, they experience a great deal of stress and cope with that stress by hiding and waiting to see if the New territory is safe, plentiful, and not owned by a more dominant tortoise.

Keep your regular daily schedule for soaking and wellness checks and offer tempting foods (edible flowers, forex). Keep his food and water near to where he is hiding out.
 

Shesabutterfly16

New Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2021
Messages
9
Location (City and/or State)
Aurora CO
Reptiles have evolved in specific environments and depend entirely on those environments to run their bodily systems, including wakefulness and hunger.

You must know the exact temperatures at ground level at all points in the habitat...coldest, basking spot, ambient.

If all environmental conditions are Optimal, then he is not brumating (cold pausing) or aestivating (hot pausing).

Reptiles are highly territorial...they have a Home Base that provides security, food, water, access to mates, etc.. When they are moved, they experience a great deal of stress and cope with that stress by hiding and waiting to see if the New territory is safe, plentiful, and not owned by a more dominant tortoise.

Keep your regular daily schedule for soaking and wellness checks and offer tempting foods (edible flowers, forex). Keep his food and water near to where he is hiding out.
Thanks so much! His basking spot could be a tinge warmer. It is between 85 and 92. And the overall temperature does not get colder than 60 at night. Which I have read is important. But He has been in the hide box for close to two weeks! He doesn’t eat any of his food that I offer him so I will definitely try to move it closer to him. Should I take him out of the hide and put him in the basking spot? I just didn’t really want to disrupt him if he was in there trying to hibernate. Which I will admit I have I know nothing about the hibernation thing.
 

ZenHerper

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Feb 27, 2020
Messages
1,496
Location (City and/or State)
New Jersey
Thanks so much! His basking spot could be a tinge warmer. It is between 85 and 92. And the overall temperature does not get colder than 60 at night. Which I have read is important. But He has been in the hide box for close to two weeks! He doesn’t eat any of his food that I offer him so I will definitely try to move it closer to him. Should I take him out of the hide and put him in the basking spot? I just didn’t really want to disrupt him if he was in there trying to hibernate. Which I will admit I have I know nothing about the hibernation thing.
He can sense the heat. You can set him near the spot after a good long soak, but if he's not eating, he does not need the hottest temperature in the landscape.

Give it a little more time. Try some dandelion flowers from a pesticide-free location, placed at the opening to his hide box.

If you can bump his overnight temp closer to 70* that might make him less drowsy in the mornings, so more apt to take an interest in looking around and getting back to his routine.
 

Krista S

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Aug 4, 2019
Messages
701
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Saskatchewan
Hello! I recently made my tortoise a new enclosure! It is awesome! It’s also much larger than the last one that he had and It includes a pretty good size hide box. I was really excited to put him in it and he enjoyed it for a few days. He had a couple feedings, had some water and then he went in the hide. I keep checking on him thinking he is enjoying the new enclosure but he is just hanging out in the hide. I look in there and notice that he does adjust himself and move in different positions within the hide so he is not dead but I don’t know if he is hibernating either. Just seems like kind of weird timing. And he only did this one other time since I have owned him. Maybe the Hide encouraging him to do hibernate? And if so how do I care for him while he’s hibernating? It is still cooler here at night but it is definitely warming up. Will the warmer weather encourage him to wake up? This is just a new thing for me and I’ve owned him over 10 years. TIA!
Sorry you’re having this problem with your tortoise. Can you post some pictures of your new enclosure? Maybe there’s something we can point out that could be the reason why he’s hiding so much. Do you have a lot of plants or visual barriers in his enclosure? If it feels too open, he likely won’t feel secure and this could cause him to hide.
 
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