Newbie enclosure size questions


The member formerly known as captain awesome
10 Year Member!
Aug 15, 2008
Location (City and/or State)
no ulterior motive at all (maniacal laughter) what?


New Member
Nov 20, 2015
Again thank you for all the great info. With my research I have confusion related to the redfoot or cherryhead. I have seen cherry foot, redfoot, cherryhead redfoot and mostly likely other names as well.

I think I understand that cherryhead (without redwood in the name) is possibly the smallest. Is there a good resource that lists the scientific name so I don't mistakenly but the wrong specis?

Leaning towards a Hermanns at this point.

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Jan 23, 2008
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
Actually, both the redfooted and the cherry head are Geochelone carbonaria. The variance in color and size is due to the location in South America where they come from.

Hermanni is a good choice. We have a great resource here on the Forum in HermanniChris. See his web sites here: and

And you can find the care sheet he wrote for our members pinned at the top of our Hermanns section.


Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2015
Location (City and/or State)
Toronto, Canada
Cherryheads aren't always so small. I think the largest one is almost 18". Read about them in the red foot section - there is a lot of debate over whether they should be advertised as smaller than northern red foots at all (maybe they're a little slower growing, maybe they are able to breed at a smaller size, maybe they are smaller on average but large sizes are still possible). Getting cherry heads hoping they'll stay under 12" or 10" is a gamble. I've seen many places advertise their adult size as 8"-10", but there is zero guarantee of that because there are many adults much larger.


Well-Known Member
Sep 2, 2015
Hello and welcome!

Cherryheads and Redfoots are pretty much the same, they just come from different areas of the world :) The Cherryheads also have a leg spur that the Reds dont have and I believe their plastrons are different colored too.

They require a good amount of humidity. I live in Miami, where its ALWAYS humid, I chose this species because its easier to care for them in my climate.

I personally think a good "starter tortoise" is a Russian, they dont get huge and their care isnt difficult. I have both, and so far my Russian guy is a breeze to care for :)

I hope to see pix in the future with your choice! ;)

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