NEW Red foot Tortoise

StaceyJane87

New Member
Joined
May 26, 2018
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3
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London
Hiya everyone,

Thank you for accepting us newbies, we have been reading lots of threads searching for answers for our baby red foot but we are really confused, so wondered if there was some experts on here who maybe able to help us??

We bought "Barry" for our 10 year old son who has been doing lots of research on tortoises and decided on a red foot and our son decided to call him/her Barry. We got Barry from a reptile shop and have had him for about 2 weeks and we are so in love but we don't know if we are doing it right.

Barry is roughly 9 months old and all he does is sits in his house all day and never actually comes out. I have to place him by his food and water bowl to make him eat and drink he never actually goes looking for food although Barry has started to eat strawberries and veg from our hands (he loves a strawberry!!! But only give him one every couple of days) we feed him a variety of pellets pre soaked with a calcium powder and a wide range of leafy veg. We bath him everyday (where he does all his pooping so keeps his vivaruim clean) where i use cotton buds to clean around his arms legs and head but he does not like that very much and we use a baby toothbrush for the shell and gently scrub. We also clean the enclosure out every week.

Are we doing the above right? Im worried that he never comes out to eat.

He loves to be petted and will rub his head against my finger but also likes to pee on me lol.

With the temperature we are having a bit of a nightmare with it. Barry never basks?? I place him under the lamp and he goes straight back to his wooden hide. I have moved his hide to the warm end but he don't like it. The hot end is between 90-92f and the cool end is 82f, humidity is kept between 70% and 80%. The basking lamp is switched off of a night along with the UV lamp, they are on for about 14 hours a day with only the heat mat on of a night, which has his hide in front of it but Barry stays there all night and again does not move. We also have a thermostat on the basking lamp which is set to the temperature of the cool end which means it sometimes goes out, is this right?

Barry has bark substrate which we spray 3-4 times a day.

What we are worried about is that he doesnt eat much but we have to show him where his food is, otherwise it seems as though he wouldn't eat

Why doesn't he bask at all? When we picked him up from the shop his shell was nice and warm and his shell has not been warm since.

We have calcium blocks in the enclosure but he has recently started chewing on his bowls, is this anything to be concerned about ?

Are we doing anything wrong?

Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Stacey, Ross, Charlie and Barry :)

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ZEROPILOT

REDFOOT WRANGLER
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Welcome.
It's Very likely that one of two things are stressing him out.
Over 84,85 is too hot. And bright lights make Redfoot uncomfortable.
You want an all over temp of from 80 to 85. Humidity of over 75% And warmth and UVB without a lot of extra light. So heat from a CHE and light and UV from a struncomfortably.
Member @Anyfoot lives in the U.K. and does an absolutely ADMIRABLE job raising/keeping Redfoot. Just as well, even better than some of us here in a tropical environment.
 

ZEROPILOT

REDFOOT WRANGLER
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Check out our Redfoot care pages.
Pellets are a poor choice for food. Especially since Redfoot can and should eat a HUGE assortment of foods. More of a variety than any other tortoise.
Also, it is perfectly normal for a baby Redfoot to spend most of the day hiding.
Even adults spend mid day sleeping.
 

Redfool

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Check out our Redfoot care pages.
Pellets are a poor choice for food. Especially since Redfoot can and should eat a HUGE assortment of foods. More of a variety than any other tortoise.
Also, it is perfectly normal for a baby Redfoot to spend most of the day hiding.
Even adults spend mid day sleeping.

Latin American torts and us old folks....we all need our siestas
 

ZEROPILOT

REDFOOT WRANGLER
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I could be wrong, but is the red bulb recommended?
No
But I figured that would come up, eventually.
As long as it doesn' make the tort eat the substrate. It can give off warmth without bright lights.
First things first. There's a lot to do...
 

daniellenc

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He will start eating when he’s settled in. Until then there is nothing wrong with putting him in front of his food and water twice a day especially after an evening soak. These guys don’t like bright lights so try early morning and soak around sunset and feed again. It takes a month for a routine to develope. These guys mostly don’t bask so no worries on that. Get your temps in the 80’s and he’ll be happy.

Ditch the red light! Do you have a CHE? Cermsmic heat emitter. What’s your UVB source? I do a 100 watt CHE and UVB for light and UV cause again they like it a bit shady. So he gets his light 7am until 6pm then natural room light only. Pellets are treats but thankfully they can eat so many weeds and grocery store foods variety is easy. Also it being too hot may be causing more hiding.
 

teresaf

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Your thermometer isn't adequate for high humidity applications try a digital one that has a probe so the mechanical part stays outside your tank. I'll attach a picture of one that I used... I would actually use two or three in your case. One at each end. maybe one in the middle. mostly to compare against each other... I highly doubt it 70 to 80% humidity in there because condensation would be on the glass. You can pour water in the corners instead of spraying it with a bottle to increase humidity. Is the top open? If so close it and that will hold your heat and humidity in. It's much easier to control heat and humidity in a closed chamber. Make sure you have your digital thermometer hygrometer before you do so that way you can get accurate readings. One other thing... I'm sure you don't want to come home and find your red foot upside down in your water dish. I would get rid of it pronto. I've attached a picture of what a lot of us here use for our tortoises. The sides are sloped so it's easy access for the tortoise especially since we sink it into the substrate so the edges are at dirt level.
 

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StaceyJane87

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May 26, 2018
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Thank you everyone.

We have a Micro climate B1 thermostat (with probe) which we have lowered the setting on so hopefully Barry will be more comfortable now.

The bulbs were what the pet shop sold us, do you recommend that we buy a lower wattage UV tube and a ceramic heat emitter, (what wattage?) 20180605_060046.jpg 20180605_060046.jpg

With regards to the food, when i say pellets i mean the komodo tortoise food in a variety of flavours which are little pellets that i soak in water, is this no good? We also have the "treat" pellets that we give Barry a few a week of but also have leafy stuff on offer for him.

The reason the glass didnt have condensation on it was due to me wiping it over so i could take pictures and show you our set up lol please see picture attached of the vivatrium this morning. Lots of condensation lol.

I dont think our water bowl is an issue as it is sunk in to the bark and has sloped edges and shallow, i have no issue with feeding Barry just worried he might be hungry before i put him near his food.

If he is happy hiding all day then im fine with that, just worried he will end up sick so i really appreciate all your advice :)
 

daniellenc

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Pellets are merely a treat....all of them. Stick to weeds, greens, fruit a few times a week, protein once a month, and pellets twice a week at most or you'll have a picky tort. As far as the red bulb it's a no go and will cause your tort to eat substrate. Return it and get 100 watt CHE.
 

StaceyJane87

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Ohhhh ok we will stick with the leafy options than, knowing my luck i'd end up with an obese tortoise!! Lol.

What's the best source of protein?

We will go shopping tomorrow for the other bulbs :) thanks for ur advice.

I have been told that we wont know the sex until Barry is about 4!! Is there no way of getting an idea now? Compared to what i have researched the tail looks longer and pointy compared to the shorty pics i have seen does that mean he is likely a she lol
 

daniellenc

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My guy loves shrimp but others are plain boiled chicken, high quality cat food soaked in warm water, worms of all types, roaches, pinky mice frozen thawed, and many others. And yes 3-4 for sex.
 

Kevinrrussell

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Red foot don't bask they are forest tortoise. Too much hurts. Temps are a little warm...but moisture is important..this part is where most kill or drown..they need to be soaked 4 times a week...Toroises aren't turtles they cannot swim...u will drown it if don't do it correct...next chop food into tiny bits..mince the food up...small..water......heat lamp yes..but no basking..heat lamp...and I have UV bulbs as well.. night time temps are 70 degree min. Day time can range but my 4 foot by 2 foot has three different micro climate ..one end is 70 degrees..middle 85 and hot side 95.....everybody here usually is awesome..your tortoise will hide a ton..they are reptiles not a gerbil..so get use to them breathing..bobbing the heads up in d own. Red foots communicate by bobbing heads up and down..enjoy...tortoise speed...
 
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