Which is more desirable Smooth or Pyramidal Shell?

Minimenmom

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Question for those in the know as I am a new Tortoise Mom. Which is more desirable for the Tortoise? A smooth outter carpace or a ridged pyramidal carpace? My little one has ridges and I understand that is from not enough humidity. Can anyone comment which is safer or more desirable for the Redfoot? Thank you.
 

wellington

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Smooth. If your do some searching around the forum, you will see very quickly pyramided is not good as it means a very dry start.
 

cmacusa3

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Most will say smooth and I will agree but I have a 3yo Leopard that I bought with some pyramiding and it doesn't bother me as long as he is healthy, adds some character. Yours doesn't look bad in the picture you posted.
 

Minimenmom

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So can I correct it as she grows with appropriate humidity??? As long as it's not wet and swampy right?
 

cmacusa3

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So can I correct it as she grows with appropriate humidity??? As long as it's not wet and swampy right?

Yes you can stop it and the new growth will come in smooth. It will never go away but will look better over time.
 

crimson_lotus

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My understanding, and please let me know if I'm incorrect: Smooth is better than pyramiding because instead of a nice, solid shell, pyramiding is porous kind of like MBD and is therefore more fragile.
 

Tom

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"Desirable"? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

I prefer a smooth carapace because that is what this species normally demonstrates in the wild. Pyramiding is an indicator that something was not right as the tortoise grew.
 

mintybum

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I definitely think they should be smooth or they wouldn't be in the wild, I have a 18 year old who is smooth and I adopted 2 2 year olds who were smooth but are now pyramided, no idea how it works but I wonder of its when they are very young
 

jockma

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Mine's lumpy and I love him. I think it's just rewarding to own a pyramided juvenile and see smooth new growth, but I like lumpy adults too. I'd like to raise a hatchling to be smooth, though.

I don't think anybody WANTS their tort to grow bumpy but some of us are partial to bumpy ones. It's irreversible so you just have to love them the way they are.
 

JoesMum

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A smooth shell indicates a tortoise has been raised in optimum conditions and therefore the tortoise is less likely to have hidden health issues such as bladder stones or MBD.

A pyramidded tort has not been raised in optimum conditions
 

cmacusa3

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A smooth shell indicates a tortoise has been raised in optimum conditions and therefore the tortoise is less likely to have hidden health issues such as bladder stones or MBD.

A pyramidded tort has not been raised in optimum conditions

I don't totally believe that. I have one that has been raised in the guidelines to a T and still is just a little bumpy
 

cmacusa3

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There's a big difference between pyramidding and a little bumpy.

so where do you draw the line, When does bumpy become pyramiding? I ask that because people post pics of torts all the time and a few members jump on them and tell them their tort are pyramiding and to me they just look a little bumpy.
 

JoesMum

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I don't draw lines. A little unevenness in a tortoise would be of less concern to me when buying/adopting a tortoise than obvious pyramidding. That's all.

Obviously you can reassure yourself that you did everything right and still got slight unevenness.

Someone buying a tortoise cannot be certain that is the case unless they know the breeder very well.
 

Yvonne G

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Personally, I have a big soft spot for the beauty challenged tortoise. I LOVE the ones that aren't perfect. And a little bit of pyramiding...sometimes even a lot of pyramiding...isn't harmful. It's merely cosmetic.
 

cmacusa3

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Personally, I have a big soft spot for the beauty challenged tortoise. I LOVE the ones that aren't perfect. And a little bit of pyramiding...sometimes even a lot of pyramiding...isn't harmful. It's merely cosmetic.

That's the part I was thinking, I don't think all pyramiding is considered harmful. I've noticed that Leopards and a few other species are more prone to it no matter what.
 

jockma

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I've owned my pyramided tort for a few years now and my view on pyramiding graduated from it being the absolute worst thing ever to it being generally harmless, just indicative of some husbandry issues that may be present. If husbandry is good and the tort is still getting a bit bumpy, that's fine too.

I think there's a lot of pressure we put on ourselves (myself?) to have a perfectly smooth tort and it replaces a lot of the fun of having a tortoise with stress. I wish I could go back to when I first got Bean just to tell myself IT'S OKAY! He was bumpy when I got him, he's always going to be bumpy, he doesn't care about how he looks. He knows he's cute.
 

TammyJ

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so where do you draw the line, When does bumpy become pyramiding? I ask that because people post pics of torts all the time and a few members jump on them and tell them their tort are pyramiding and to me they just look a little bumpy.
This is hilarious!
 
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