I think that if he can find/make a burrow deep enough that temps don't go below freezing, he should be able to survive the winter. They love to eat and generally prefer leafy greens. Russian tortoises aren’t exactly the most cuddly pets. They can get territorial and fight, leading to tip-overs and injuries. They are also found worldwide in the pet trade. Too commonly, reptile owners do not bring their pets in for regular, preventive medical check-ups because their animals appear healthy and problem-free. Below this line is safe for Russian Tortoises outdoors if the proper enclosure is offered and if special needs are met in the winter time.) Especially in desert ranges, vegetation can be quite scarce. Provide rocks, shelter, and some plants. Most GI parasites can be eliminated with medication once they are identified by a veterinarian in a fresh stool sample under the microscope.

Expert Tip: Not all Russian tortoises will hibernate. Russian Tortoises also commonly develop respiratory tract infections when they are housed in excessively cool or damp conditions or are fed improperly. Without enough exposure, the tortoise’s bones and their shell will become weak and brittle.

Russian Tortoises should not be fed nutrient-deficient iceberg lettuce, grains, or meat. We and our partners will store and/or access information on your device through the use of cookies and similar technologies, to display personalised ads and content, for ad and content measurement, audience insights and product development.

Enclosure walls should be at least 8inches high to prevent escape. At night allow a dark and cooler period. Expert Tip: In addition to standard lighting, pick up some UVB lights. They do best when levels are around 40 to 50 percent. Keep in mind that the presence of a heated shelter does not guarantee that your animals will use it.

With moderate to large tortoises these animals pose little threat, but a smaller species could be easily abducted overnight by a hungry opossum or curious neighborhood cat. This step is very important for tortoises that live inside and don’t have continued exposure to the sun. They may come out every once in a while when the temperatures warm up, but most of their time will be spent sleeping. Many recommend creating a “humid spot” in outdoor environments just in case the tortoise needs a boost of moisture. A lot of planning has to go into the habitat of a Russian tortoise. Substrates that allow for digging, such as paper-based bedding, peat moss, Cypress mulch, and coconut fiber are ideal. They are also found worldwide in the pet trade. Captive hibernating tortoises have slowed metabolisms and sub-optimal immune system function, predisposing them to infections and other diseases. They’re non-aggressive and have been known to respond to owners. It takes 10 years before the hatchlings will be able to reproduce themselves, and they will not be considered fully-grown for another 10 years!

When climate permits, it’s best to house Russian Tortoises outside in large, penned-off areas containing tortoise-safe plants such as prickly pear, cassia, various grasses, and morning glory. If you live in an area where temperatures fall below 40° F your tortoises should be moved indoors. Below this line is safe for Russian Tortoises outdoors if the proper enclosure is offered and if special needs are met in the winter time.) Keeping your tortoises inside the enclosure is only half of the battle. For extra security, place some large rocks along the edges of the fence. Habitat: Russian Tortoises can be kept indoors or outdoors if temperatures permit. Dark leafy greens and grasses as well as alfalfa hay should make up a large portion of their diet. The water depth should be about 2” or to the level where the tortoise’s plastron (bottom shell) and carapace (top shell) meet on the side of the tortoise. Russian tortoises are beautiful reptiles with all the hallmark features you’d expect from a land-roving tortoise. That means providing the right conditions around the clock. If housing outside, make sure the cage is secure. And there are many reasons why. Baby tortoises should never be housed outdoors. Salmonella bacteria is transmittable to people but does not typically cause problems in the tortoises. Information about your device and internet connection, including your IP address, Browsing and search activity while using Verizon Media websites and apps. If climate extremes do not allow for outdoor housing, Russian Tortoises can be kept indoors in large plastic tubs or glass aquariums. To make that happen, here are some care guidelines you need to follow: Russian tortoises are unique in the fact that you can keep them outside if your climate permits it. They also can have a small amount of fruit such as apples and berries. We recommend these reptiles all the time, and always hear amazing feedback! Finally, one should consider whether or not the species in question will brumate (hibernate). We always love helping out our readers. You should also steer clear of grains and nutrient-deficient food items, such as iceberg lettuce.

They spend many months in aestivation, doing, quite literally, nothing. Depending on where you live, you may even be able to keep yours in a natural habitat outside! This is just part of our commitment to you in providing you with a safe browsing experience. The Greek tortoise is a fantastic pet reptile that has recently seen a surge in popularity. Light sources can be kept on 12-14 hours per day. This can lead to weight loss and malnutrition.

Yes, these tortoises can make good pets, but it is important to know what you are getting into. They are commonly found in steppes, deserts, hillsides, and grasslands. Find out more about how we use your information in our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. This great escape is not always intentional, but results in a missing pet nonetheless.

Their cute…, Indian star tortoises are a very popular pet that we’ve been a fan of for a while. These include respiratory infections and metabolic bone disease. Thus, it’s a goods choice for first-time reptile owners. You can try cypress mulch, coconut fiber, peat moss, or even shredded paper. Rather, use a smooth surface that would seem more difficult to climb. Russian tortoises are much smaller than the massive species that people are familiar with. At night, they can tolerate temperatures as low as 60 degrees. Below are some guidelines for housing tortoises, as well as some time-tested recommendations which will help insure that both the keeper and the kept benefit mutually from this arrangement. When it gets too hot or too cold, the tortoises will retreat to their burrows for months at a time. When conditions are perfect, these reptiles can lay 2 or 3 clutches of eggs per year. That’s the bare minimum, but we recommend aiming for an enclosure that measures four feet long by four feet wide if possible. These can be a modified dog house, or something as simple as an appropriately sized plywood box. Baby tortoises should never be housed outdoors. Having some flat rocks will keep the reptiles entertained. You might witness some slight aggression between males. They have very specific care requirements, and an incredibly long lifespan. The tank should be at least eight inches tall as well. In addition to the actual height of the enclosure walls, the material used should not provide too many tempting footholds. When choosing a pet, always purchase an animal that was bred by a responsible breeder and not captured in the wild. This may lead to discharge and serious infection, so it’s important to stay on top of humidity levels. The Russian tortoise can be kept indoors. Sand, calcium-sand, and soil are generally not recommended substrates for Russians, as they are indigestible if consumed, can lead to gastrointestinal tract obstructions, and are very difficult to keep clean.