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Tortoise bit off the head of cage mate.

Discussion in 'Advanced Tortoise Topics' started by Kyleb43, May 13, 2019.

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  1. Kyleb43

    Kyleb43 New Member

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    Hello all, I’m new to this forum because I came home today to find that my adult female tortoise had bit the head off of her female cage mate. I keep all 3 of my tortoises in the same cage as a breeding group, (M/F/F). I only occasionally saw fighting before this but nothing I believe to be serious. Here are some pictures.

    IMG_1557802971.577709.jpg
    IMG_1557803032.131959.jpg

    I guess my question for the community is, have you ever seen something like this happen to any of your torts?
  2. Grandpa Turtle 144

    Grandpa Turtle 144 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    IMG_2437.jpg
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  3. dmmj

    dmmj The member formerly known as captain awesome Moderator 10 Year Member!

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    I have seen very viscous bites & wounds from fighting males & males trying 2 breed but never decapitation. Sorry 2 hear about the death of your tortoise.
  4. dmmj

    dmmj The member formerly known as captain awesome Moderator 10 Year Member!

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    Were these tortoises outside? could it have possibly been a predator?
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  5. Kyleb43

    Kyleb43 New Member

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    No, I keep them inside. The three of them have been together with no problems for over a year now.
  6. dmmj

    dmmj The member formerly known as captain awesome Moderator 10 Year Member!

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    OK, except for breeding purposes my males are in separate enclosures
  7. G-stars

    G-stars Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Let me start of by saying that I’m sorry your tortoise died. What size of an enclosure were those 3 tortoises sharing?

    You stated in your original post that there had been occasional fighting. So there had been problems and obvious signs to remove them from each other for over a year. This could have and should have been prevented. If I was you I would learn from this experience and remove the pair from each other before you are left with only one tortoise.
  8. Jodie

    Jodie Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    That poor tortoise! I am sorry for your loss. Please separate the remaining two. I do thank you for posting this, and hope someone else will learn from this mistake.
  9. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Tortoise Club

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    I've seen female russians with their eyelids bitten off by another russian, or leg scales, etc., but I've never seen this kind of injury. I wouldn't have thought a tortoise could inflict this injury. Are you absolutely sure it couldn't have happened some other way?

    I'm so very sorry this happened. This is an awful thing to come home to.
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  10. Ben02

    Ben02 Well-Known Member

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    I’m so sorry:(

    I never knew a tortoise could cause that much damage, it kind of looks like she was squashed by something.
  11. vladimir

    vladimir Well-Known Member

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    I'm so very sorry for your loss
  12. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Those don't look like tortoise inflicted wounds to me. Looks like something a cat or dog would do. I've never seen damage like that inflicted by another tortoise.
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  13. dmmj

    dmmj The member formerly known as captain awesome Moderator 10 Year Member!

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    that's what I was thinking but they were indoors
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  14. Kyleb43

    Kyleb43 New Member

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    Well I know it was the other female because when I came home she had blood on her face...
  15. Ben02

    Ben02 Well-Known Member

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    Ok, does the other female have any wounds?

    I’m sorry to ask this from you but is it possible you could take some closer pictures of the passed tortoises head and neck? I 100% completely understand if you are not comfortable with that. Again I am very sorry this happened:(
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  16. mark1

    mark1 Well-Known Member

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    i'd guess the tortoise died with it's head out and the others ate what they could , the soft parts …..
  17. stephpw

    stephpw New Member

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    My two guys have been together for two years now; they seem fine together. Sometimes They sit face to face under a log. It looks so cute and I say they are chatting. Could this be aggression? They have pushed each other out of a cozy spot on occasion.
  18. dmmj

    dmmj The member formerly known as captain awesome Moderator 10 Year Member!

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    Yes that spot is probably the nicest spot. And they're each trying to sit there. It's probably going to get worse not as bad as above but still be forewarned.
  19. SweetGreekTorts

    SweetGreekTorts Well-Known Member

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    What you described are definitely signs of bullying and I would recommend separating them. I'm sure they seem "fine" together right now and they've spent time together...but they will tolerate each other and get along until the one day that they don't, and there is no way to predict when it will happen. They are already displaying subtle signs of bullying and it will only get worse as time goes on.
  20. Toddrickfl1

    Toddrickfl1 Well-Known Member Tortoise Club

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    They had a similar incident at the Petco by my house a few years ago. They had two Redfoots in a tank and they came in one morning and one had bitten the head off of the other.
    EllieMay likes this.
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