Hey all! I’ve been researching tortoises since December of last year. Repticon is coming up in 7 weeks and I just want to get a few more pieces of advice on redfoot tortoises.
I know a bit from research but I just want to double check here before I buy one at repticon (if they have any.) I’m looking to hopefully get a hatchling (fingers crossed.)
So, as a start I know it’s not recommended to keep them in a glass enclosure. I’ve read a lot of people recommend using a wooden enclosure like a tortoise table. I know they need a uvb bulb and a heat emitter and a humidifier. So I know I’ll need several thermometers on each side to monitor temps (as well as a hygrometer.)
I know they eat mostly leafy greens like kale, romaine lettuce, and tomatoes that are dusted with vitamin and calcium supplements every other day. I know to give them pellets every other day (or was it 2 times a week?) I’ve also read that redfoots are omnivores and do eat meat occasionally. I’ve read that some people give them plain boiled chicken, and I’ve read that some people give them an egg once a month. Any suggestions on what/how often to give them meat/protein source?
I also know they need to be soaked regularly but this is where I’m a bit confused. I’m not sure if the babies need to be soaked daily, or every other day?
I’ve also read that some people give them fruits, but most sources say not to. Can anyone clarify on this?
Another topic I have questions on it beak/nail maintenance. I’ve read that using the slate rock as a basking platform/eating platform helps to naturally keep their beaks and nails trimmed but other than that I think I’d just take them to a vet if they needed anything trimmed. I don’t know if I’m comfortable to do it myself!! I also heard of using cuttle bones for both beak maintenance and calcium supplements.
Also, when it comes to substrate I’ve heard a lot of different suggestions from chemical free natural potting soil to reptile dirt to coconut coir.
And last but not least is shell health. I’m really concerned about pyramiding. But as long as I keep their uvb light on for 10-12 hours a day, and I make sure they get a varies diet it should be fine right? Is there anything else specifically I can do to keep their shell right?
Thanks in advance! And please, if I’ve misunderstood anything in my research correct me. I want to make sure everything is just right. It’s been almost a year now since I started researching. I feel fairly confident about it, but I still wanted to see if anyone had any tips or corrections about info I’ve gotten.