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Raising Aldabra in Phoenix AZ

Discussion in 'Aldabra tortoises' started by Zach B, Apr 29, 2015.

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  1. Zach B

    Zach B New Member

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    I was wondering if anyone has info/opinion on raising Aldabra in the Phoenix, AZ area. I know many species thrive in backyards here, but, is it too hot and dry for Aldabra?

    My sulcata love their yard, pretty heavily planted with grasses, shrubs and trees, but you can't escape the fact that summer temps can top 115F with low relative humidity.

    Zach
  2. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Everyone I know that has tried this has not been too thrilled with the results. They do okay there if they already have some size on them, but little ones don't do so well. Personally, I would not try it. I wouldn't try them here either. Same with red foots or Manouria.

    Having said that, anything is possible with enough time effort and money. Want to spend thousands of dollars trying to make a decent set up for them and then work all day everyday trying to maintain it all? It can be done, but that is too much work for me.
  3. ALDABRAMAN

    ALDABRAMAN KEEPER AT HEART 5 Year Member

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    ~ Zach if you would send me your e-mail to my e-mail I will forward it to a few of our customers that keep aldabras in Arizona. We keep in touch with a few, they might be receptive to speaking with you directly.

    [email protected]
    franz_see and wellington like this.
  4. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    You can't get better help then of those that are doing it. Good luck, hope they will help you and keep us updated. Maybe even share their info, just not their personal info.
  5. ben awes

    ben awes Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Well, Tom's going to disagree but I think you'll do fine if you can provide a high humidity hide. They spent so much time sleeping/napping that the time they spend out of the hide in dry air is more than offset.

    I'm not the expert here, but my brief experience shows that a high humid hide is the most important part of the enclosure to have humidity.

    I don't think it takes thousands and thousands to do it right.

    IMHO,
    Ben
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  6. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    I agree, but not just aldabra's, but with any tortoise being able to be raised properly anywhere. It just depends on how much you want to put into doing it right and it will take more money then if you lived in a more appropriate place, but I don't think thousands, but not as cheap as if you lived in say florida.
  7. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    I always thought of a central air or window air conditioner unit tortoise shed apposed to something like my heated shed.
  8. ben awes

    ben awes Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Two comments:

    Of course it will take money but I got into tortoises because they are relatively easy animals to keep, once their habitat is set up properly. And, they are not a continual energy / money drain. At least they don't have to be. And I think that's true of aldabras as well.

    In your opinion why are Aldabras different? Because they are giants or because they have specific biology that requires something different?
  9. Alaskamike

    Alaskamike Well-Known Member

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    I think Ben you make a good point. It really is the set up that makes the difference. None of our torts are in their native environments. Those that have to keep them indoors have the greatest challenges with heat , humidity, space and sunlight.

    Some areas are easier than others outdoors , but have their own challenges such as fluctuations in temp and humidity as well as safety from predators.

    A shelter from overheating would be my concern in AZ. As well as some humidity. A sprinkler on a timer would be nice in summer.

    Sulcatas burrow to escape heat and I built one for mine. My aldabra seems to just find shade , but here in South FL it doesn't get over about 95f. And it stays humid in summer

    I wonder if an underground hide would stay cool enough for an Aldabra also. And would they use it?
    Interesting idea though.
  10. Zach B

    Zach B New Member

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    This is what I've had in mind. This is the enclosure I built for my Sulcata. I have the space to build essentially an identical one for an Aldabra. I would have to beef it up a little, taking adult size into consideration. It is a triangular shape, about 20' x 60' including a pond with a fresh water supply and drain. The enclosure has mist and spray irrigation that runs several times a day and it has shade in part of it all day. I also have a good sized lawn for grazing. Any thoughts?



    Tortoise enclosure.JPG Lawn.JPG
  11. Alaskamike

    Alaskamike Well-Known Member

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    I can't imagine why that would not be great. Not too many torts have such a great place to roam.
  12. ben awes

    ben awes Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Me either, looks like a tort dream to me, but others might see things I don't see.
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