Matilda moves....

jeff kushner

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Joined
Jul 24, 2020
Messages
282
Location (City and/or State)
North of Annapolis
Matilda is a year old by our estimates. Kerry & found her upside down on a walking path last June after Kerry managed to get home after being in Fla since Mar C19 lockdowns. Matilda soon became part of my life. She's fantastic at conversation, well a good listener and never once has argued with me. I've suggested to Kerry that she take note, but I'm not stupid, I only say that when on the phone, out of reach! I think by the time I first weighed her a months or so later, she was 14 gms. She's now a BEASTLY 74 Gms!

Matilda has grown to the point where I knew she needed to be a turtle, not a pet. We began having these conversations a couple of months age so she didn't feel like she was being kicked out.

Understand guys, this is a "work in progress", just like your enclosures were......give us time. What you see in her home is native to this area.

Question;
I plan add a DEEP half/rotted leaf pile, maybe 18" deep of leaf matter in the concrete corner(on the left) for hiding and hibernation. My question is, will the concrete make it too cold in that corner to hibernate?

My only goal is to provide a safe environment where she can thrive.



Matilda 1st pic.jpg




Below she is helping to select her homesite!

M selecting her homesite!.png

That done, she proceeds to supervise to construction, without getting underfoot!
Supervision the Coinstruction.png

Now for the good parts! She told me that she feels like those women on TV who have a home built for them.....
house 1.png

At last, the first shots of her in her completed home and she spent her first night outside last night... m4.png


She spent the night under her logs in the "cave" I left her..

I spent the night thinking about her. Hmmm, a little "Separation anxiety" ....lol


jeff
 

jeff kushner

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2020
Messages
282
Location (City and/or State)
North of Annapolis
Matilda got weighed on the 18th, her designated "weigh day". I wasn't surprised that she lost weight....down to 70 grams from 74 in June. I am not stupid, I realize that with her enclosure right next to my bed until she moved outside, she was getting fed like a Queen....now, she has to search. She feels like "empty-shell"....even though she's well hydrated.

It is also unGodly hot outside, a massive temp change for her even though she had multiple heat sources inside. NO creature that most people would keep, likes moving when it's 94F/68%RH. She loves the early mornings though when the r/h is usually above 80% around here and I regularly find her in her pond.

One of the other members reminded me about pond fish food and since I still have a couple of bags from when I kept indoor tanks, I put a pile next to a corner of watermelon, then finished off her 3 course meal with the main course, a box-o-worms(a half of a h/gal milk container, filled with a dozen of so worms laid on its side).

She tore into the pond pellets pretty readily although I had dampened then slightly when I re-wet her home. I typically will empty a gallon or so of water onto her dry areas to get them from becoming arid when the surface temps hit 115 (shot with a laser) in 1/4th of her home(don't worry, she has 100% shaded section too). She also has a couple of logs to crawl under on the cool side and I like them to stay moist.

Overall, I've relaxed a bit and am handling her moving a little better....lol
 

jeff kushner

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Joined
Jul 24, 2020
Messages
282
Location (City and/or State)
North of Annapolis
qk update

I got "antsy" to know which direction she was going after she had lost weight a couple of weeks ago so she got an impromptu weigh-in....71-72 so she's headed back up! Today reworked 1 corner of her home, dug down 18-20" mixed some local woods heavy leaf-mulch-peat stuff we get on the top 3" anywhere in the state I think<lol> and mixed w/ top soil and with 2 lb or so of cut up watermelon and 200 new worms(not really, but a lot) and emptied the 'worm cooler" kept in the bsmt since last Oct of it's used up dirt and remaining colonists into the pen as well.

Matilda watched at first as I got the spade out and attacked the corner of her home. Then she displayed an "ALL NEW" behavior for her, she became very territorial and literally chased me from her pen. It was wild to watch it, she came out of her hide, after watching for 15 minutes, double-timing it over the terrain with a gleam in her eye as if she saw me as one very large worm and she didn't slow down till she was underfoot...so I stepped out.....she can count that as a win!

After running from a fight, I put the remaining 142 million new worms into the cooler and added food & dirt. I posted a glowing review last year for Uncle Johnny b/c they truly "hook it up" They send you nightcrawlers as if THEY wanted to receive nightcrawlers but I'm not so anal as to count but remember, I do get paid for my guesses. I've read that 250=1lb ...don't know if that's accurate but I'll use it as a metric. If that is so, I am going to suggest I may have received closer to 400 than 200.

I feel better that little Matilda's doing well....and I'm really glad I didn't wait till the 18th to find out! Life is way too short to be stressed when I don't need to be.
 

Krista S

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Tortoise Club
Joined
Aug 4, 2019
Messages
842
Location (City and/or State)
Saskatchewan
Updates on little Matilda are always one of my favorite things to see on the forum. I’m so happy to read how well she’s doing. That must have warmed your heart to see her get a little spicy and chase you out of her domaine. Good girl, Matilda! 🥰 Don’t forget to post an updated pic soon.
 

jeff kushner

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2020
Messages
282
Location (City and/or State)
North of Annapolis
Thanks guys...I've always had a thing for "tomboys" like my Kerry, so to see Matilda get physical and assert herself by "getting big".... I'm not intimidated by her, really, I'm not! LOL
 
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