Need hinged tortoise info, please

norma.b

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St Lucia ESTUARY KZN South Africa
My hinged tortoise female( I think) walked through the front driveway gate in December. I put her into the back yard walled garden. She has been exploring daily and eating greens, dried meal worms, butternut and cucumber, as well as weeds and chews on a cuttlefish occasionally.It has turned cold at night this week and she has been hiding . I suspect she has dug under the leaves and wood shavings to semi hibernate. I also put an ash brick shelter with a sheet of glass and half stainless steel on top for a roof and tiles inside for a floor, in a sunny spot against a wall. I thought that being local (I live in KZN Natal) she would not hibetnate. Naturally she didnt choose the shelter I built. I do want to keep her for our Winter and set her free in the game park where she belongs, in the spring. I will be moving away then. I cant find where she is hiding so fill her water bowls daily and planted cabbages and nasturtiums incase she gets active again. Any advice on what more I can do for her. I would bring her in if I could find her.
Norma.b and Teeny Weeny Totsie
 

Yvonne G

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In my opinion it's not a good idea to release a tortoise after it has been in a captive situation. It's much better to have released her right away and not kept her at all.
 

wellington

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I agree unless it's been a short time in captivity. They aren't going to forget how to be wild and what they need to do in a short period of time.
Too long of a captive time, then they should not be released. Mainly because they could have by them got used to everything being so easy as we provide it all.
Over a couple weeks in captivity they should not be released.
That said, they would probably do just fine at any time of release. If they can spend a life time getting back to their home area, I'm sure any release time is a breeze.
 
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