Tortoises/ what breed do y’all recommend to get for a pet

Hey reptile community I’m looking into getting a Tortoise and I own snakes and monitors and geckos and been owning reptiles for 15 years but never a tortoise and I’m really wanting to get one and add to my reptile family, My question is what is a good breed of Tortoise to get for a pet?

What kind of things are important to you, what size enclosure or pen do you want/what size do you want, do you want them to be friendly, if you’re breeding do you want them to be high demand to sell easily?

I’m not to concerned about size but I do want a friendly natured tortoise and I will not be using to breed, it will be just a pet

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Here’s a good list about different tortoise species and some basic information about them.
List here
If you have any questions about anything then ask away, also I know that @osbornereptiles has quite a bit of experience with tortoises.

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My personal favorite tortoise breed is the Russian Tortoise. I think they are great because they stay small in size. Other tortoise breeds grow to a decent size resulting in huge enclosures. They are also very docile and easy to care for. Make sure they have a basking area and you provide UVB light and maintain its humidity. They are also very affordable and easily obtained. They can be found very easily at reptile expos and pet shops. Just beware that they live a VERY long time so be prepared to commit to them. Best of luck!

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If you want a friendly and social tortoise I highly suggest Redfoots. They don’t get too large or grow too quickly. They are very outgoing, eat a wide variety of seasonal foods, including an occasional rodent for added protein, and are very tolerable of large temp swings. Their only real con is they require high humidity, they love to soak, and they require a long-term investment. We’ve had our little family of 7 going back to 2013. This past season we had the pleasure of watching dozens of babies hatch from 3 of our adult females. We keep them outdoor as much as we can, usually from March until October as long as night time temps are above 50.

I also keep Star Tortoises but they tend to be much more shy. They prefer to hide rather than run straight over to greet you and see what kind of treats you have.lol. I still spend hours each week just watching them do what they do. They are much less tolerant of low temps and shouldn’t be exposed to temps under 70. Still a very beautiful tortoise that doesn’t get much bigger than a small bowling ball.

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This is one of the things that has stopped me from thinking about a tortoise as a potential pet (though I was pleased to learn recently that some tortoise species are sometimes smaller than I thought- thanks guys! :smiley:). I have health conditions that will most likely render my remaining lifespan nowhere near long enough for a tortoise. No need to get sad, I’m just being practical. I don’t have anyone younger/healthier that could adopt a tortoise after I kick the bucket.

So, I’m wondering- are there tortoise rescues, where tortoises that are already quite old need homes? Does anyone have any experience adopting older tortoises? I’m not planning to pursue the idea right away, I’d just be very interested in hearing other peoples’ experiences.

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I’m glad you are seeking all necessary info prior to obtaining a tortoise. They are great animals, easy to house, maintain, and feed. I acquired mine from my grandfather. He had the tortoise for 15 years and I’ve had it for 10 years and counting.

There’s definitely rescues and sanctuaries that adopt out and take in tortoises. I would do an online search to find if there is one near you. Some are tortoise specific others take care of any and all reptiles if they have space.

Best of luck!

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How big do Red foots get?

How big do red foots get

They can get a little bit over a foot though it takes more than a decade for them to reach that size.

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Our largest female is around 16" at 15 years old. Others range from about 8"in a 7 year old female cherryhead and 12" for a 13 year old male. Cherryhead are also a smaller subspecies that stay around 10".

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Other than size do Sulcatas make good pets, and what’s there rate of growth

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Sulcatas are said to be sociable and can recognize and form relationships with their owner and they have unique personalities. I can’t verify this information since I don’t know much about them. I do know that they grow very fast and within their first couple of years they can reach over 10".

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@osbornereptiles

I wonder what dark and wicked sorcery was being discussed at the tortoise council…

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What kind of tortoise is that is the circle?

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I believe the tort council is composed of Red foots if Im not mistaken. Sulcatas Red foots and those yellow closely related species of Red foots are the 3 tort species I like best.

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I personally think that some of the Testudo species make the best pet tortoises. Specifically the Russian, Hermann’s and Greek. They stay small and are hardy and easy to care for. They can be housed indoors due to their small size, but in the right climate they can also do well outdoors. Whatever tortoise species you get, don’t be drawn in by the low expense and easy availability of WC tortoises. Buying captive bred is very much worth the extra $ and potential waiting.

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My tortoise is a Sulcata. She grew from a little round cutie to a good size in one year. (and she has a lot more to go)I live in southern Alabama so now that she is big enough not to be carried away by a bird, she can spend most of the year outside. My husband’s God kids want to take her in when she is huge and I’m no longer around.(they are little kids now) It would be tough to keep a big sulcata inside all of the time, I’ve heard of them tipping over refrigerators and digging into Sheetrock. They do make interesting pets. You might check out Camp Kenan on YouTube. Lots of good Tort info.

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