1. Welcome! Are you interested in tortoises? If so, we invite you to join our community! Our community is the #1 place for tortoise keepers to talk online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your tortoise and enclosure, and discuss any tortoise topic with other tortoise keepers. Get started today!

Who shares your tortoise enclosure with your tortoise?

Discussion in 'North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus)' started by bioteach, May 19, 2019.

Help Support Tortoise Forums by donating:

  1. bioteach

    bioteach New Member 5 Year Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Our Desert Tortoise (Sunshine) had an unexpected visitor. When I entered her enclosure to offer her some Hibiscus blossoms that were out of her reach, there was a baby rabbit in her burrow! It was hilarious watching me chasing the rabbit out, and we are working on a better gate. The rabbit squeezed into Sunshine's space through a gap no larger than two inches. Do Desert Tortoises share burrows with other animals in the wild?
  2. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2010
    Messages:
    45,049
    Likes Received:
    24,682
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    Southern California
    (These ads do not appear for registered members.)
    Yes they do in the wild, but it should be avoided in our captive environments when possible. In the desert, many animals will seek refuge in the tortoise burrows to escape hot or cold temperature extremes. You can probably find pics of rattlesnakes sitting next to a burrowed tortoise.
    Cndlou0309 and TammyJ like this.
  3. dmmj

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

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    Messages:
    19,741
    Likes Received:
    6,977
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    CA
    In the desert or is it dessert? Either way a DT burrow is highly desirable property ( beach house in Malibu desireable) so many ctitters squat in them.
    Cndlou0309 and TammyJ like this.
  4. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
    Messages:
    37,201
    Likes Received:
    13,497
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    Chicago, Illinois, USA
    I learned an easy way to remember if its desert or dessert
    With dessert you wouldnt mind having to. So dessert has the two SS.
    Desert, the land, has one S.
    Cndlou0309 likes this.
  5. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
    Messages:
    37,201
    Likes Received:
    13,497
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    Chicago, Illinois, USA
    My leopards have rabbits in their yard all the time. The rabbits never enter their indoor area though.
    Cndlou0309 likes this.
  6. NorCal tortoise guy

    NorCal tortoise guy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2017
    Messages:
    605
    Likes Received:
    617
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location (City and/or State):
    Northern California
    Desert tortoises are called a keystone species because so many desert animals depend on there burrows for a place to hide but yes as said above I would do my best to avoid it in captivity.
    Cndlou0309 and RosemaryDW like this.
  7. TammyJ

    TammyJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2016
    Messages:
    2,289
    Likes Received:
    1,690
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    Jamaica
    Talking about sharing space...well, sometimes I suppose slugs and snails find their way into my tortoise enclosure, but I never find any, so I guess their last thought must have been "wrong turn"!
    Cndlou0309 and RosemaryDW like this.
  8. Coco Channell

    Coco Channell New Member

    Joined:
    Saturday
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location (City and/or State):
    Las vegas
    My Pixie adopted a baby bunny too. It s so sweet to see them sleeping together and I swear she saves food for her baby bunny. I figured it was because she had babies of her own before and her mothering instincts are taking care of this poor little bunny
  9. T Smart

    T Smart Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2012
    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    315
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location (City and/or State):
    Chicago, IL
    One of Harrison’s favorite hiding spots is an old rabbit nest. IMG_5731.jpg
  10. Coco Channell

    Coco Channell New Member

    Joined:
    Saturday
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location (City and/or State):
    Las vegas
  11. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2014
    Messages:
    18,778
    Likes Received:
    33,736
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    South Eastern Florida (U.S.A.)/Rock Hill S.C.
    I get Curley Tailed lizards in my enclosure and on occasion, a Cane Toad.
  12. ascott

    ascott Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    Messages:
    16,101
    Likes Received:
    2,743
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location (City and/or State):
    Apple Valley, California
    Rabbit, snakes, lizards, black widows, scorpions and misc critters all will reside with your CDT. It is natural, it is harmless to the tortoise. I would and do always suggest humans never reach into a burrow, without first clearing for any critters dangerous to us, before retrieving or cleaning the burrow or the burrow apron....but there is no reason to worry. Just be certain that the tortoise is the first to dinner table when presenting food. There is tall tale signs of what is eating the food, tortoise or rabbit :)
  13. wccmog10

    wccmog10 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2018
    Messages:
    176
    Likes Received:
    200
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location (City and/or State):
    Georgia
    There have been over 300 species documented using gopher tortoise burrows here in the southeast.
  14. T Smart

    T Smart Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2012
    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    315
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location (City and/or State):
    Chicago, IL
    Reminded me of this cool picture.
    IMG_5801.jpg
  15. wccmog10

    wccmog10 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2018
    Messages:
    176
    Likes Received:
    200
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location (City and/or State):
    Georgia
    That is a great picture/pamphlet. Thanks for sharing.

    I just had a thought- I wonder if anything bigger uses the burrows up here in Georgia. In Georgia the tortoises are a good bit bigger. Your flyer there lists tortoises as weighing 7-9 lbs. here in Georgia I’ve caught several that are 15-20 lbs (it was for research- so we actually weighed them, that is not a guess).

    But I digress.

    In my outdoor tortoise pens I mostly get small tree frogs in the water bowls. Usually squirrel tree frogs. Last winter I had a small anole lizard get into my reptile building, he lived with the tortoise most of the winter.
    T Smart likes this.
Similar Threads: shares tortoise
Forum Title Date
North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus) Desert tortoise not eating after near drowning Jul 9, 2019
North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus) Florida tortoise 'detained' for blocking the road Jun 24, 2019
North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus) Desert Tortoise prefers to be under the patio Jun 24, 2019
North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus) Prolapse in F tortoise Jun 21, 2019
North American Tortoises (genus Gopherus) Male or female? Three years old desert tortoise Jun 15, 2019

Share This Page