The Herman tortoise is native to the Mediterranean, and can be found in two different subspecies. If you are considering getting one of these, be sure that you fully do your research, as they are harder to care for than most people selling them would have you believe.
The most important thing about choosing a tortoise is making sure that they have been captive bred by a legitimate tortoise breeder. It is illegal to catch these animals from the wild to be sold as pets, so be sure the breeder has proper documentation. One of the best ways to check if the breeder you are looking into is a good one is by finding out what they recommend with feeding and housing.
A bad breeder may recommend an indoor terrarium and a heat pad. However, Herman tortoises need at least 100 square feet (10 square meters) when full grown, and can therefore not be kept inside. Heat pads are dangerous for tortoises because the bottom parts of their shells are sensitive and they can get burned on heat pads.
It is also not recommended that you get a Herman tortoise if you live in an area that has a lot of moisture because they are not designed for moist conditions.
The other thing many bad breeders will recommend is a dried pellet food. This is actually very bad for your tortoise because it was made for many different types of tortoises. Most dried pellet foods have too much protein and not enough fiber for the Herman tortoise. If you feed your Herman tortoise dried pellet foods, they can have lumpy shells and develop bone disorders. Instead, you will need to feed your Herman tortoise a good diet of dark green leafy vegetables and other plants.
The Herman tortoise does make a great first tortoise because they are fairly easy to care for if you live in the right climate. They’re a smaller tortoise, reaching only 7 inches (19 centimeters). Their shells are pretty with a mix of dark colors and yellow. They can live for 80 years or more when properly cared for. They are considered to be very friendly tortoises, and do not get easily stressed by environmental factors.
All this and more makes the Herman tortoise a great choice when looking for a pretty and friendly tortoise that is easy to care for and will be a companion for many years to come.
When owning a pet tortoise, it’s important to have a good tortoise house for her. If you don’t have the proper housing set up for your tortoise, you will risk having an unhealthy animal that will not live up to her full potential.
The first thing you will need to do is learn all you can about the individual needs of the specific species that you have. Some types live in warmer climates and need to be kept in warmer conditions. These types are also usually strict herbivores and need to be fed properly. Other tortoises come from cooler climates where they are omnivores and will need some meat in their diet as well.
Once you have identified the climate needs of your pet tortoise, you can begin to prepare the housing area. Most tortoises need a large amount of space, at least 100 square feet (10 square meters). Because of this, they don’t usually do well when kept indoors. For a truly happy and healthy tortoise, you will need to keep her outside where she has room to walk around and graze at will.
It’s important that your tortoise have a house in her outdoor enclosure. The house will provide protection for her from weather and from predators. Depending on the species of tortoise you have, there are different requirements for the tortoise house.
If you have a tropical or desert tortoise, you will need to provide a greenhouse that will allow her to stay plenty warm on cooler days. There are many types of greenhouses that you can find specifically for tortoises. It’s important to have one that is completely safe and that will stay at the right temperature. If you live in an area that does get cold, you might do better not to keep one of these species of tortoise because they don’t do well in lower temperatures, even with a greenhouse.
For tortoises that live in temperate climates, it’s important to have an enclosed house that she can go into at night and when it rains. She may also choose to hibernate here during the winter, though it is best to keep her in your house during the winter to be sure she is safe during hibernation. If you live in a tropical area, it is better not to own one of these tortoises from temperate climates because they need the cooler weather to hibernate in.
Whatever type of tortoise you have, having a proper tortoise house is important for ensuring the overall health and the longevity of your pet.
Tortoises are fascinating creatures and there are many interesting tortoise facts to be aware of. If you are not familiar with tortoises, these are slow moving, lovable land dwelling reptiles which are in the same class as turtles, however, they do have some distinct differences.
Tortoises and turtles have long been a part of people’s traditions and religious beliefs. They are a symbol of wisdom, patience, and long life in many parts of the ancient world. The hard shell of the tortoise is a symbol of strength and protection, and many religions believe that the tortoise carries the Earth on its back.
There are a few differences between a turtle and a tortoise, however they are in the same family. Turtles are both land dwellers and water dwellers. They can swim and some species of turtles prefer to live underwater. Tortoises, however, do not swim at all and only wade into the water to clean themselves off or to get a drink.
Baby tortoises are hatched in a burrowed nest, or a hole. The mother tortoise lays between one and thirty eggs in the hole and then leaves the babies to hatch on their own. After a few months, the eggs hatch and the babies survive off the egg sac fluid for the first couple of days of life. Once they babies are strong enough, they move to their mother’s nest and she protects them until they are old enough to go out on their own.
One of the most fascinating things about a tortoise is its longevity. Tortoises can live to be about one hundred and fifty years old. If you look at the rings on the tortoise shell, you can sometimes determine how old the tortoise is.
Unlike the turtle, a tortoise is almost always an herbivore. Turtles are known to be omnivorous, eating both meat and plants and sometimes even small animals. However, tortoises love their fruits and vegetables and leafy greens are preferred over a small fish. One of the largest land dwellers on the planet is actually the Galapagos turtle. This lovely creature can be about four feet long and weigh up to five hundred pounds.
Tortoises are often kept as pets, and there are many different breeds of tortoises to keep. However, tortoises do need a lot off space to roam around and play and they are not very good at being house trained. However, if you have a pet tortoise, you might want to learn more interesting tortoise facts.
The red foot tortoise is a great pet for beginners. This beautiful tortoise is easily recognized by its scales which are sometimes scattered with red, yellow, or orange coloring. They are also known for their hourglass shaped shells, especially in the male red foot tortoise.
The red foot tortoise originally comes from South America and the Caribbean. These pets can be found in Venezuela, Brazil, Paraguay, and other places which are humid and full of rainforests. In the wild, they will eat vegetation and carrion.
The red foot tortoise is not an endangered species, however, it is protected. Because many people consider this particular tortoise to be a delicacy, great care is being made in its conservation efforts. It is actually illegal to sell or transport a red foot tortoise outside of its natural country of origin. However, it is not illegal to own one as a pet, therefore, the red foot tortoise is still a popular pet to have.
The red footed tortoise will be most comfortable in an outdoor enclosure. They require a warm, humid living space with lots of edible vegetation that closely resembles their natural habitat. If you are keeping a red foot tortoise outside, plant plenty of edible leafy plants inside and around their enclosure and make sure they have a nice warm sunny spot to lay in. Also, have a heating lamp ready for those chilly nights and make sure they get plenty of moisture. This can be accomplished with a patch of mud in their enclosure or by spraying the inside of their home with a sprinkler once a day when it gets too dry and hot outside. Do not keep them outdoors in the winter.
If you keep your red foot tortoise indoors, make sure to keep them in a large enough enclosure. Tortoises require a living space that is three nine times as big as they are. An aquarium with a heating lamp makes a good home, however, make sure your tortoise aquarium has background paper or something so the little ones don’t try to walk through the glass. They don’t realize it’s glass and will keep trying to get through the aquarium, potentially hurting themselves badly.
The red foot tortoise makes a great beginner pet and as long as you give it daily attention and play time, this tortoise will always be friendly and sociable to you.
The horsefield tortoise is also known as the Russian tortoise. This species of tortoise is naturally found in areas of low vegetation from Pakistan, Iran, China, Russia, and surrounding areas. The Horsefield tortoise is a popular tortoise pet and they are very hearty reptiles.
This particular tortoise breed males an excellent pet because it is not very shy and they only grow to be up to ten inches long. The female of this species is larger than the male by about two inches.
The Horsefield tortoise is an excellent digger. Because of this, any outdoor enclosure should be buried deep into the ground. This little tortoise will require a dry and warm habitat. These tortoises do not like damp weather, however, they do need sunlight in order to properly digest their food. It is best to feed your Horsefield tortoise plenty of raw and leafy vegetables. Romaine lettuce, mustard and collard greens, or dandelions are favorites of this tortoise, however, try to avoid fruits. The sweetness of the fruits is not healthy for their delicate stomachs.
The shells of this tortoise species usually have a muddy color or a black color shell with yellow marking sometimes and they have a sandy or straw yellow colored body. They are very pretty to look at and they have a long life span, as well. Usually this species of tortoise can live between fifty and seventy five years and it is often handed down through family generations as a family pet.
It’s recommended that you keep your Horsefield tortoise indoors during colder months and make sure they have a UVB heating lamp. During the warm summer months, these tortoises can be kept outdoors as long as they are in a well-ventilated and a well protected house. They should not be allowed to get out at night in the event there are natural predators around such as large birds or badgers.
Although these tortoises do not like damp humid living areas, make sure to give them plenty of fresh water daily. In fact, it’s recommended you give them a shallow comfortable bath each day so they do not dehydrate. Also, make sure they have plenty of room to run around and something in their enclosure they can burrow in. Because they love to dig, the horsefield tortoise will need leaves, hay, or something similar to burrow and hide under, especially when it comes time for them to hibernate.
There are many random tortoise facts to learn if you are interesting in tortoises. Tortoises are loveable, slow moving, land dwellers with a very large history. Many people confuse tortoises with turtles, however, there are a few distinct differences between the two.
For example, turtles love water. Many turtles live in or near the water, and they are excellent swimmers. Tortoises, however, are not good swimmers at all and they always live on land. Tortoises only go into the water if they are getting a drink or trying to get clean.
Also, turtles will eat just about anything. They are known to be omnivorous creatures, however, tortoises are definitely herbivores. You can feed a tortoise leafy vegetables and soft fruits, however, they won’t like a small fish or piece of chicken.
Female tortoises lay up to thirty eggs. They make a shallow hole as a nest and lay the eggs in the hole and cover them up. The eggs are left to hatch on their own. After a few months, the eggs will hatch and the tortoises will live their first few days off of the egg fluid. However, once the turtles are strong enough, they will walk over to their mother’s nest and stay with her until they are able to go out on their own unprotected.
Tortoises are also one of the largest creatures on Earth. They can grow to be about five hundred pounds and up to four feet long. He Galapagos Islands are home to the world’s largest turtles and they are known to the locals as “saddle backs” because of the shape of their large shells. These large turtles are on the protected and endangered species list, however, many efforts are being made to preserve these and other tortoises.
Tortoises are well known all throughout history for their symbolism in mythology and religion. The Native American Indians and the Hindus believe that the world is held up by resting on the back of a giant tortoise. Also, in ancient China tortoises were known as a symbol of patience, long life, and wisdom.
Tortoises are often kept as pets and they make an excellent addition to anyone’s family. They are loveable, quiet, and they live for a long time. However, be sure to give tortoises plenty of room to roam and remember, they are not house trained. There are also many other random tortoise facts you can learn.
The Herman tortoise is fast becoming a popular pet. This lovely little creature is very sociable and quite easy to care for. The Herman tortoise does not get very large, only between five and ten inches long, and are great beginner pets. There are a few different species of Herman tortoises, however, all of these species come from the Mediterranean. Herman tortoises are naturally found in Italy, Spain, Croatia, Turkey and other surrounding areas.
The Herman tortoise is also a very attractive pet. They have blotches of color along their shells. These colors can be grey or yellow and they distinguish the Herman tortoise from other tortoise types. The colors on their shell, however, might fade over time.
This beautiful tortoise is naturally found in wooded, grassy areas, therefore, they are best kept outside in a comfortable and safe enclosure. Their homes should allow for plenty of vegetation growth and a lot of air circulation. Also, the tortoise will require warmth, so giving your Herman tortoise a heat lamp will definitely make the little guy much more comfortable. It is highly recommended you keep your pet in a sunny and warm spot. These tortoises love to bask in the sunlight and the warmth.
Herman tortoises are very good climbers and very good at digging. It is important to have a secure enclosure for them, especially at night, so they are not prone to attack from predators such as large birds or dogs and cats. Make sure the habitat you have for your tortoise is at least twice the size high of the length of your Herman tortoise.
Although keeping your tortoise in a water aquarium is a bad idea, because tortoises cannot swim, it is still important to give your Herman tortoise plenty of clean water to drink and bathe in. Make sure your pet has access to clean water at all times. Your Herman tortoise will also need a lot of vegetation, so planting plenty of edible vegetables around the habitat will make your Herman tortoise very happy.
It is also best to keep male Herman tortoises apart. The males tend to fight and therefore are not happy in close proximity to each other. However, you can keep a male and a couple of females together and they will live harmoniously. The Herman tortoise can also live quite happily by itself, although as a pet, they love to be social with people and are very friendly to keep.
Whether you are looking for a small tortoise that you can keep in a terrarium in your house, or whether you have an outdoor space in a warm climate that will allow you to keep a large tortoise, there is a species of tortoise for every lifestyle, and there are a lot of tortoise facts to consider before choosing a pet. When searching for your new pet, there are a few important factors to keep in mind.
1. Do you have the monetary ability to not only buy a tortoise, but to provide adequate care to that tortoise?
2. Do you have the time required to care for your tortoise?
3. How much space do you have to devote to your tortoise?
4. If you already own another species of tortoise, are you researching what types of species work well together?
These are all questions that are important to ask of yourself before you consider buying a tortoise, and before determining what type of tortoise you want to own.
There are close to 300 identified species of turtles and tortoises, so there are a lot of options when you are looking to purchase a tortoise. Keeping in mind the considerations mentioned earlier in this chapter, below are just a few types of tortoises that tend to work well as pets. This is just a small sampling, and a more extensive list of tortoises can be found by further researching on the web.
African Spurred Tortoise- This tortoise, also known as the Sulcata Tortoise, can grow to be more than 175 lbs, and is the third largest known tortoise. Because of this, acquiring one of these tortoises is a big commitment.
Leopard Tortoise (Geochelone Pardalis) – The Leopard Tortoise is found in Southern Africa. It cannot be exposed to cold or damp weather. It also needs extensive access to heat and light throughout the day. It requires regular access to water, grows very quickly, and eats an herbivorous diet.
Horsfield’s Tortoise – This tortoise is a popular species to keep as a pet. Also known as the Russian Tortoise, this tortoise is a herbivore, and likes to burrow to get away from the mid-day sun. This tortoise is friendly, and usually lives for a very long time – oftentimes between 50-75 years.
Indian Star Tortoises – This tortoise is very similar in care to the Leopard Tortoise. It is found in India, requires regular access to water, is 100% herbivore, and does not hibernate.
Pancake Tortoise (Malachochersus tornieri) – The Pancake Tortoise is so named because of its unusually flat shell. This tortoise’s shell is actually more flexible than other tortoises, which allows it to get into areas that other tortoises cannot access. It is an herbivore and lives in dry climates.
Texas Tortoise (Gopherus Berlandieri) – The Texas Tortoise is native to North America. It eats vegetation, such as cacti fruit. It does not necessarily like burrowing and prefers a habitat of grasslands.
Hermann’s Tortoise (Testudo hermanni) – This tortoise is found in Southern Europe. They are largely herbivorous and enjoy brush to hide in from the sun.
There are many tortoise facts to consider before choosing a pet and it is important and necessary to weigh each of these factors before choosing a tortoise to best fit your lifestyle.
Of all known tortoise facts, their longevity truly captures the imagination.
Tortoises populated the earth almost 200 million years ago, existing alongside the dinosaurs. The latter are long extinct, but the tortoises are still around today.
There are, however, specific tortoises that can be equally proud of their advanced years, if it matters to them. The best claim to oldest living being on earth had been Tui Malila. When only a hatchling in 1777, the royal family of Tonga received him as a gift from the explorer Cook. Generations of the family passed on, but Tui Malila’s life only came to an end in 1965, 188 years later.
Another claimant of the title had been Adwaita, an Aldabra giant tortoise suspected to have been 250 years old when he finally gave up the ghost in 2006 at the Alipore Zoo in India. There is insufficient documentation to prove this, as Adwaita had been obtained as adult. Allegedly, he had been one of the treasured pets belong to General Robert Clive, a dignitary of the British East India. According to reports Clive had had four such tortoises, but Adwaita was only brought to the zoo in 1875, more than a hundred years after Clive’s demise.
Harriet was perhaps one of the best known of the ancients. She had travelled aboard the Beagle on the famous scientific exploration undertaken by Charles Darwin. According to records of the trip, there had been 40 tortoises on the ship, but many ended up being served for dinner or on the dissecting table. Harriet proved more fortunate. In later years, there was some confusion about her exact subspecies. She did not belong to any of those native to the islands where Darwin was known to picked up tortoises and DNA testing failed to yield an answer after she died. Her original name was Harry as she was first thought to be a male. Harriet was a popular inhabitant at Australia Zoo, her last home where she died at the ripe old age of 175 in 2006. She was fond of eating hibiscus flowers. .
Another tortoise with a chequered past was known as Timothy. Found on a Portuguese privateering vessel by the Royal navy, she became a mascot on a number of ships in the fleet, even putting in an appearance at the Crimean War. After almost forty years at sea, Timothy finally returned to land, albeit Powderham Castle in England in 1892, where she remained the guest of several Earls of Devon before dying in 2004.
Jonathan, who lives on St Helena in the Atlantic Ocean, is estimated to be the oldest tortoise alive today. Brought over from the Seychelles around the age of fifty in 1882, he is taken to be around 169 years old now. A British newspaper dug up an old photograph of Boer War prisoners dated 1900. Clearly visible in the shot is the gentle giant, Jonathan.
The incredible age that some tortoises can and do reach, must surely be the most mind-blowing of tortoise facts.
The Horsefield Tortoise has very different dietary needs than tropical species such as the Red Foot Tortoise. Firstly, it should not consume any animal protein. You could perhaps provide it with titbits of fruit once or twice a week, but its digestive tract cannot accommodate the sugars of fruit. The safest fruit option is apples and even those should not be indulged in frequently.
In nature, the Horsefield tortoise hibernates for a period of up to six months in winter and burrows down and grows less active during the high summer. This second hibernation is referred to as aestivation. Therefore, it needs to consume as much nutrients as possible during its brief spell of activity, not only to provide body reserves for winter, but also for reproduction. It lays six to ten clutches of eggs, sometimes twice or three times a year. The tortoises are more active when in captivity, but may get less opportunity to exercise if kept in an enclosure. They may hibernate for shorter periods. All these factors could easily cause them to be overfed.
When keeping Horsefield tortoises, you should take care to expose them to a fairly large variety of those foods they can eat. Avoid Iceberg lettuce, which has no nutritional value and may spoil their appetite for other food. On the other hand, Romaine lettuce, red and green leaf lettuce, endive, escarole, radicchio, chicory, turnip and mustard greens, Kale and Collards can be included with a clean conscience. Like various other tortoises, Horsefields love eating flowers. Roses, hibiscus, dandelion, cornflowers, California poppy, Forsythia and Chrysanthemum flowers make a great treat for them.
Meat, grains and any type of dog or cat food is unsuitable for the Horsefield tortoise. There are also types of food that can cause the wrong sort of chemical reactions to form, resulting in the body absorbing less of the necessary minerals than it should. There are high concentrations of phytic acid in beans, peas and cereals and since this binds with minerals, it means that less calcium will be absorbed.
If your tortoise wishes to hibernate, it will usually show signs such as slowing down, eating less and making attempts to burrow. If your tortoise has a healthy body weight, there is no reason not to let nature take its course. If however, it has been battling some infection or shows signs of a parasite infestation, you would be advised to keep it lively. Do consult your vet, when in doubt.
The Horsefield Tortoise has a versatile character that can intrigue and surprise you.