Northen Italy Testudo graeca ibera

ressar

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Northern Italy
Hi to all. So, after introducing myself in the Introduction section, I begin the threads about my 4 new Testudo graeca ibera.
As I have already told, I bought it because it's not a long time that I have built a new home with my wife and we own a large garden. So, in future if all goes good, they will have a large outdoor pen.
I buy it from a local breeder near me that bred 4 species of Testudo (hermanni, marginata, kleinmanni and graeca).
They born in fall 2019 and have already made 2 winter in hibernation outside.
In the next post I will describe it better with measurement and weight and I will tell you how I built the outdoor pen (a little one because for now they are tiny).
For now I add only some photos so you can begin to see them. All the blue and withe color is not mine, it's already from the breeder. It will fade away with some time.
The third miss a dorsal scute but I choose it just the same because I think "me neither be perfect".
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Dorsal view
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Ventral view.
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Eating mallow.
 

ressar

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Northern Italy
Some other information.
I mark the tortoise with a little red dot on the right costal scute from the first to the fourth.
This are they data when I bring home and the "name" (they are not mine but from my granddaughters) :oops::
1CD means first costal right

1625143311167.png

I bring home at 1 may and they were awaken from hibernation from about 1,5 month.
They are tiny in size but that is due to the fact that the breeder raise them always outside, with all the hibernation period they will make, in a very large pen grazing only the wilds herbs that grow inside (dandelion, clover, mallow, plantain, nettle, ecc).
There is also to take in consideration that in Northen Italy, in spring and summer the day may be very hot but the night are generally chilly and so the metabolism of the tortoise is slow down for almost half of the time.

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3CD Oogway

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All the family
 

zovick

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Some other information.
I mark the tortoise with a little red dot on the right costal scute from the first to the fourth.
This are they data when I bring home and the "name" (they are not mine but from my granddaughters) :oops::
1CD means first costal right

View attachment 328265

I bring home at 1 may and they were awaken from hibernation from about 1,5 month.
They are tiny in size but that is due to the fact that the breeder raise them always outside, with all the hibernation period they will make, in a very large pen grazing only the wilds herbs that grow inside (dandelion, clover, mallow, plantain, nettle, ecc).
There is also to take in consideration that in Northen Italy, in spring and summer the day may be very hot but the night are generally chilly and so the metabolism of the tortoise is slow down for almost half of the time.

View attachment 328263
3CD Oogway

View attachment 328264
All the family
Hello and welcome.

Your tortoises look very nice. Good luck with them!
 

ressar

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I will share with you a few photos of the outdoor pen taht I build for my little greeks.
My goal was to buil a naturalistic enclosure that allow them to live in a more natural way.
I don't like sterile environments with only a hide and a bowl for the water.
I built it with fir planks of 25 mm of thikness. They will not be much durable but I hope in 2-3 yars to dismantle and set up a big pen.
20210318_164454.jpg
The dimension are about 1,5 x 1,5 m and there are two distinct houses for the torts, one covered with a wooden lid and one with a polycarbonate lid (so it simulates a little greenhouse). All the lids are hinged for easy accessibility.
20210403_171027.jpg
All the other part of the pen is covered with a hinged lid with a wire mesh to protect the little guys from rats, foxes and birds of prey.
20210403_170950.jpg
In the 2 little houses I removed the soil afor about 30 cm of depth and top up with a mix of soil, peat and beech litter, to allow them to bury down.
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The I put inside stones, pieces of bark and dry branches to give them variety, ambient enrichment and possibility of hide.
20210407_183645.jpg
For the plants ...... to be continued 🤣
 

ressar

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Ok, second episode.
I planted inside sage, rosemary and thyme ..... in honour of Simon and Garfunkle 🤣 🤣🤣
In reality to give shadow and permanent place to hide.
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20210409_102943.jpg

I planted also dandelion, plantain and wild chicory and sowed a lot of clover. This is the situation after the finish of the job.
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What do you think? Critiques or hints?
 

ressar

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And this is the situation now :oops:
20210701_190118.jpg
Plenty of hide and plenty of food.
The four tortoise are in totally self management. No need for food and my only operation is top up the water bowl.
I check daily if all is going OK, give them only one time at week a few ripe fruits and weight and misure every two weeks.
Some detail.
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Sarah2020

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Well done just monitor shell growth as they do need humidity when young to avoid pyramid shell.
 

zovick

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And this is the situation now :oops:
View attachment 328748
Plenty of hide and plenty of food.
The four tortoise are in totally self management. No need for food and my only operation is top up the water bowl.
I check daily if all is going OK, give them only one time at week a few ripe fruits and weight and misure every two weeks.
Some detail.
View attachment 328749
View attachment 328750
View attachment 328751
Very nice job. I am sure your tortoises are very happy in their new home.
 

ressar

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Well done just monitor shell growth as they do need humidity when young to avoid pyramid shell.
Yes, sure I will do it. For now that's not a problem. Here a photo of Hoogway eating a mallow flower. As you can see the new grow that border each scute is "raised" from the old grow. If I have undersand correctly the new keratine must stay swollen in the phase of grow and only shrink when it age. So it will becom flush with the old grow and not cause pyramiding.
20210710_092908.jpg
 

ressar

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A few days ago I made this photo of 2CD Margherita basking under a pale morning sun.
It's always fun to see the strange position they take to assure themselves to be the most perpendicular to the sun as they can. This one was almost vertical on they rear leg leaned on a dandelion plant.
It seems he is sleeping nice;)
20210713_094426.jpg
 

ressar

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Another photo of my 3CD Hoogway.
He/she is the biggest of the four and the one that grow faster.
You can see the black border of each scute that is the new grow of this year.
Here he is beginning to eat a flower of Alcea rosea (I think it english name is hollyhock).
They eat it with "mucho gusto"😋
20210813_111013.jpg
 

ressar

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I will share with you a few updates about my tortoise.
Beginning from the day that I bought it, I weight and measure every 2 weeks.
Here are the data and the graph about weight and the Jackson ratio from 1st may until mid august (weight in grams).
A few consideration of mine:
1 - the two tortoise that are bigger in the beginning have grown up more that the two smaller, so the bigger become increasingly bigger and the smaller stay increasingly smaller.
2 - the Jackson ratio are good for all the 4 tortoise (in fact the bigger 3CD "Hoogway" have a Jackson ratio not so good as the other 3, it is more "slender").
3 - ALL the tortoise are exposed to the same temperature, sun, food and live in an outdoor pen that is big enough not to create problems of competition or bullying.
I have already bring the smaller 2CD "Margherita" (the one that stay almost identical in weight) to my veterinary (that is known to be expert about reptile) and she told me that there are no outside symptoms of ill or disease (puffiness, runny nose, swollen eyes etc.) and to let them live they life with they "rythm" of growth.
The only advice that she gave me is to gave them a controlled hibernation in an appropriate room (I know the temperature and the humidity that must be assured) no longer than 8 weeks, because let them do a natural hibernation, in my climate, will bring the duration to 16 - 20 weeks.
Please give me alla your's thoughts, opinions and advice.
weight.jpg
jakson ratio.jpg
 

ressar

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Up. Can someone more expert than me give his opinion about the growth rate of the tortoise and the hint of the veterinary? Thank's.
 

ressar

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Here a photo of my biggest tortoise 3CD Hoogway. He is the one that growth more. In 4 months he passed from 35 gr to 69 gr. It seems to me that the shell is nice looking and smooth.
20210902_100843.jpg
 
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