Star Tortoise Care
  • rthienhrthienh August 2007
    Hi,

    Can anyone here brief me on the general care for star tortoise?
    Just got myself 2 star tortoise. I put then in a tank, with small pebbles. I also have a UV light for basking. Currently feed them long beans.

    1) Is putting small pebbles recommended?
    2) UV light for basking appropriate? (got Uv cause i read somewhere that it is needed, if there is no daily sun bathing). I switched it on for around 10 hours.
    3) They take long beans, anything i shd be concerns?
    4) Do i need to put a shallow plate of water? Would he get sick or infected if he's soaked up?
    5) one of them, the shell is kinda soft. does it mean he's sick? Please help.
  • August 2007 Edit
    Long Beans make then fat. Not good. U should read up on what to feed then. Dun jus feed then on 1 single food. About the enclosure u can have a look at these http//www.petslover.com.my/viewtopic.php?t=21
  • August 2007 Edit
    [quote1f539fcc02="rthienh"]Hi,

    Can anyone here brief me on the general care for star tortoise?
    Just got myself 2 star tortoise. I put then in a tank, with small pebbles. I also have a UV light for basking. Currently feed them long beans.

    1) Is putting small pebbles recommended?
    2) UV light for basking appropriate? (got Uv cause i read somewhere that it is needed, if there is no daily sun bathing). I switched it on for around 10 hours.
    3) They take long beans, anything i shd be concerns?
    4) Do i need to put a shallow plate of water? Would he get sick or infected if he's soaked up?
    5) one of them, the shell is kinda soft. does it mean he's sick? Please help.[/quote1f539fcc02]

    Whoa.... poor husbandry lah..... You should not use pebbles as it is not absorbent, can cause moisture to form which attracts fungus and bacteria... Please change, use Breeder's Celect recycled paper cat litter or Chipsi Extra wood chips.

    UV lighting is ok but you still need to let the torts have natural sun light twice a week for proper growth. You do not want them to be stunted rite?

    Long beans are a NO to tortoises... as a treat, yes but a staple? You can do more damage than good with it. Long beans, french beans... these are high in protein and fat, which can cause liver problems and also shell growth problems. High chance of deformed shell or pyramiding to form. Feed vegies like Sawi.... kangkung should not be given too much. you can feed hibiscus leave and flower, also opuntia cactus. Ladies Fingers, a little bit of carrot and fresh grass is good too. No fruits coz sugar can cause diarrhea.

    Yes, you need to put a water dish. Young stars dehydrate very fast.

    How big are your torts? 2 inches? It is natural for the shell to feel spongy when at 2 inches but it should never be soft and bendable once they reach 3.5 inches.....

    Have you given them calcium supplements?

    I'm just wondering, before you bought them, did you do any research on keeping a star tortoise before?
  • August 2007 Edit
    Got general info from the pet shop guy. i guess that wasnt enough. Thanks a bunch for the information. yes, i gave them calcium supplement.. twice a week. and there's also this multi vatamin reccomended by the shop, twice a week too. i guess have to ditch the beans.

    The guy is roughly around 2 inches. guess i'll be monitoring it..
    anyways, thanks again
  • August 2007 Edit
    btw crazymouse. is it ok to give star torts tomatoes as treats? Tomatoes u consider as fruit or vege???
  • August 2007 Edit
    should be vege for tomatoes, coz they have fructose like other fruits. i think.
  • August 2007 Edit
    Tomatoes can be given once awhile as treats.... anything high in sugars, protein or water content should be given only as treats. Never as staple.
  • September 2007 Edit
    ok. TQ 4 the info.
  • September 2007 Edit
    Hi there!

    I just bought Trisha (my adorable star tortoise), and i keep her under where she can get expose to sunlight but not direct during the day. Do i still have to bask her under UV light? is the sunlight coming thru the sunroof sufficient? Please advise me on tortoises favourite greens.

    What are the indications when tortoises are unwell?

    Anybody have a male torty for sale to keep Tirsha company?
  • September 2007 Edit
    Sunlight is very good for ur Star tortoise. Direct sunlight is good but not through plastic or glass. The UV will be cut out by the glass or plastic. Food is good if u give her different variety of leafy vegetable. Dun give too much beans vege like long beans or french beans. Giving those as treat are good but not as mail food supply. And dun give ur tortoise fruits.

    And give ur star calcium supplements. Water dish is also very important. Any other questions pls post here.
  • September 2007 Edit
    How big is your star? To know if it is male or female, it has to be at least 4 inches. Younger than that then it is only a guessing game.

    Direct sunlight is always the best but of course with some shady area to get away from the heat. You need a basking light for raining days or days where the temperature has dropped abit... The UV rays which are important should not be blocked out by glass or plastic, like what alligator_28 just mentioned.

    Keeping 1 star is enough, reptiles normally do well alone and the space for 2 is quite big, mine is already 6 inches and he still got another 2 to 3 inches more to grow.

    Food, you should add calcium supplements, sprinkle the powdered calcium onto foods twice a week. Foods that are recommended are Sawi, Romaine Lettuce, Opuntia Cactus, pesticide free grass, grape leaves, hibiscus leave and it's flowers. For treats, you can give lady fingers, french beans, a bit of shredded carrots, small piece of tomato. No fruits for anything that is sweet is bad for tortoises. Make sure no meat products too. I also supplement once a week with pellets, You can use ExoTerra Land Tortoise pellets.
  • September 2007 Edit
    Thanks crazymouse for the info. ) Well, my tortoise has not reached 4 inches yet...so i guess we'll have to wait wether we can name her Trisha or Thomas... (the pet shop guy was confident that it was a female).

    Ok, I can manage the sunlight exposure and food, but please advise on the calcium supplement. What kind? is it ok to give powdered calcium supplement meant for people...? The pet shop guy also advised me that if i were to feed it long beans or french beans, remove the seeds, that way most of the proteins is removed.

    Would appreciate feedbacks guys... thanx! roll
  • September 2007 Edit
    Nah... it is not in the seeds.... too much protein can cause the tortoise to grow quicker than the shell, making it like some bloated donut sandwiched up hahah... Anyway, some petshops will say stuff.... but I would say wait till 4 inches, then look at the tail base. Mine is a male, people kept saying female till one day, when I was bathing it, it's long long friend popped out like an umbrella.... now that shocked me LOL.

    Calcium supplement, you can get one by Aristopet called Repti-Cal, Pet Family at Taman Megah has 2 more containers left, Rm26 only but it will expire next year. You can use human supplement, do get only a brand called Blackmore, I think that's the name... sounds something like that. It is pure calcium with no other minerals, has added Vit D3 for calcium absorption. You should take the tablet and crush into powder, then sprinkle a pinch over the veggies.

    French beans or long beans, do limit to once a week only. Don't feed spinach, broccoli, pak choy, cabbage, normal lettuce and cucumber....
  • September 2007 Edit
    ok, thanx fo the info. I'm going to the Pet Family in Taman Megah shortly to get some cat food too. I'll check out the calcium supplement as well. U live around PJ area too?
  • September 2007 Edit
    I live at Setapak.... far from PJ but I do go to Pet Family now and then.
  • October 2007 Edit
    Hi again,

    I came acrross in a pet store - pellets for tortoise. Is called Gex. The rest is in Japanese... I can't make out what it says.. Anybody know about it or have tried it before...?
  • October 2007 Edit
    My star tortoise is 'blowing bubbles' from it's nose and there's a light popping sound. The discharge is clear. It is still eating well. What's wrong...?? roll ?

    Could it be due to the high humidity during this rainy season? What can i do? I don't provide a basking UV light but i expose it to direct sunlight often. But most of the time the sky is cloudy..

    Help me out guys, please.... alligator... crazymouse..anybody...?
  • October 2007 Edit
    Looks like it got a respiratory disorder. You need to keep it in a warm area as you got yours as a little one, am I correct? You need a basking light. What bedding do you use?
  • October 2007 Edit
    [/fonte2d49d4bbc]Thanks crazymouse...

    It was really sunny this morning and after a good 'sun bathing' this morning under natural sunlight, the tortoise seem to get better.

    I suppose it must have been due to the damp and cool weather. I shall get a basking light soon.

    Yes, it is still a little one, cute like an easter egg...heheee... wink

    I use newspaper to line the tank and change it daily. Diet is fresh green vegetables like sawi, romaine lettuce, hibiscus leaves too. No fruits or tomatoes.
  • October 2007 Edit
    OK, newspaper is fine. Little ones are very sensitive to humidity..... so during cold season, it is best to have a basking lamp on for it. Star tortoises do not do well when the air is damp and humid.
  • October 2007 Edit
    Sorry.....jus back from long business trip. No time for to visit the forum. Btw tq crazymouse 4 the advice. Ya keep the enclosure warm and make sure the air ventilation is good. Anyway nothing beats the natural thing, SUNLIGHT.

    Happy rearing....
  • October 2007 Edit
    Got it! will try to get it out in the sun whenever the weather permits. Thanks guys... I'll be sure to write back soon. By the way, my winter sapphire hamster just gave birth. I dunno how many pups yet coz she's very protective. I'll just leave her alone for a week or two
  • November 2007 Edit
    Hi cookie,
    just share my experience about my star tort that has similar symptoms like bubling and nasal discharge from nose.
    I provided a basking lamp for him and placed the lamp at a slight distant away to avoid excessive heating on him. And also place a bowl of water in case he needed cooling. But for my case, after several months, his condition remain unchanged. If it polongs, fear that it might deterioriate into pneumonia, which needs antibiotic injection and for tortoise that small, less than 2 inch, injection will be fatal to them. So i went to Klinik Haiwan Subang Jaya No. 19, SS15/4E and bought an antibiotic called Doxycycline, in the diluted form, and dropped it to its mouth once everyday. Use a carrot to entice him to open its mouth. It's condition has improved. Even the signs are gone but for total healing, continue the therapy for few more days or a week. Doxycycline is used to treat bacterial infection, it is a class of drugs called tetracycline. It affects bacteria's ability to make protein and thus stops the living of bacteria. The cause of this respiratory problem is due to bacteria pasturella testudinis and mycoplasma.

    Hope a speedy recovery for your tortoise..
  • December 2007 Edit
    silverwineus,

    I really appreciate the info. I shall keep an eye on the tortoise if the problem persists. Thanks again for sharing.
  • princeprince February 2013