An update and info on our #GivingTuesday project!

Hi Everyone!

As you can see I’ve been trying to catch up on asks and all things tortoise and turtle related. Health is still getting in the way, but I’m a little more able to get things done. I’ve still got some responses to post so if you haven’t gotten a response I’m so sorry! Its coming I promise! 

Thank you to everyone who shares, reads, reblogs, asks, and adds to my rambling responses!! Sharing information on how to keep our shell friends healthy and happy is the best part of blogging. 🙂 Well ties with getting to see all the adorable pictures of everyone’s turtles and tortoises… (highlight of my days!). 

In other news, thanksgiving time is upon us! In honor of the holiday season and the spirit of giving (and spending if we’re honest), I’m going to be featuring some awesome organizations that work to help turtles and tortoises (and animals of all kinds), through rehab, rescue, education, and research. My goal is to say thank you to these hardworking organizations by raising awareness of their work and giving details on where you can donate or how to help. All of which will lead to a special #GivingTuesday post!

If you know an organization you think I should feature, please feel free to send me a message about them! Also, please remember that we can give in all kinds of ways! Spreading the word, giving our time, and donating any amount you’re able. It really is true, every penny helps!  

Don’t worry, this will not interrupt our regularly scheduled adorable turtle and tortoise posts! (as if anything could). 

Thank you all! 

Tort-time & Zoya Pants 

Anonymous:

Excuse me while I feel quietly vindicated for telling off my brother for poking at old holes in a box turtle’s shell.

Well I think you should feel vindicated LOUDLY! Poor Boxie! Way to stand up to animal abuse! Its not funny, its cruel, and ignoring things like that is how we end up with people posting facebook videos of themselves killing an endangered tortoise. #notok 

Charles Darwin Foundation

Today’s Featured Organization is The Charles Darwin Foundation,  currently facing serious financial problems.
The Charles Darwin Foundation is responsible for bringing the Galapagos tortoise from the brink of extinction and maintaining the Giant Tortoise repatriation program. They work to conserve and increase the population of a multitude of critically endangered animals. The CDF has worked to save the mangrove finch (current population of approximately 80) to the Land Iguana (Also part of a breeding and repatriation program) and many more. They have also provided a wealth of environmental research and facilitated conservation efforts world wide.
Read about the Foundations Mission and Incredible History.

Continue reading “Charles Darwin Foundation”

Anonymous:

I took my Russian to the vet yesterday and among other things that the weird vet said, she suggested feeding our tortoise spinach pasta and egg yolk. I have never seen either of those things suggested for a tortoise to eat…what do you think about that?

Well I’m not a Vet but I think my eyes popped out of my head reading this! There may be some differences on the best weeds, greens, etc to feed your tortoise, but I have never ever encountered a single reputable source that would suggest spinach pasta or egg yolk! Spinach itself is not a great food for your Russian tortoise. Its high in calcium, so tolerable in small amounts, but contains a high amount of Oxalic Acid. That messes with kidneys of the tort and in high amounts can cause kidney stones. Its not terrible, it has a lot of calcium, but it shouldn’t be fed in large amounts. This is where the whole “feed a varied diet” comes in. 

Pasta and Egg yolk?! I don’t even know what to say about that. Neither of those are things a tortoise would eat in nature… or in any situation! Russian tortoises are herbivores.. they require very little protein that they should get from the greens they eat (like hibiscus leaves etc). No animal protein should be consumed, they’re vegetarians! Egg whites are animal protein and not natural or recommend from what I read. They include other stuff that messes with your tortoise’s ability to metabolize nutrients. 

Its awesome that you are trying to take good care of your tort and getting check ups! I would guess your vet doesn’t specialize in Exotics and specifically not tortoises. You may want to consider finding a new vet that does. Its important to have that number on hand.  So glad you asked and clearly you know enough about torts to look out for the not so great information. #HighFive 

Heres a link to a database of exotics vets in the US. http://www.reptileveterinarians.com/ 

There’s also a great message board that you could check out, lots of tortoise owners that might know someone in your area. tortoiseforum.org

Here are some great sites with information on Diet.  

Russiantortoise.net has a great care sheet and is specific to Russian tortoises.

The Tortoise Table  has a plant book that is great for identifying plants, and identify how regularly you should add something to your torts diet. 

Those are my thoughts. Again, I’m not a vet so keep that in mind. I hope it helps and that you and your shell friend are doing well! 

tortoise-adventures:

Garths new owner has made his enclosure all autumnal! 🙂

The leaves/moss/bark help protect the soil and keep it moist, while keeping the ground garth walks on relatively dry. This helps keep the humidity up which is important for hingebacks – a tropical species. Garth clearly loves it, especially the cave style plant pot hides at the back 🙂 

tortoise-adventures:

Garths new owner has made his enclosure all autumnal! 🙂

The leaves/moss/bark help protect the soil and keep it moist, while keeping the ground garth walks on relatively dry. This helps keep the humidity up which is important for hingebacks – a tropical species. Garth clearly loves it, especially the cave style plant pot hides at the back 🙂 

stumpytheorca:

—-   Hatchings on their way to the ocean (Image credit: Flickr user Jeroen Looye)

Wet beaches drown sea turtles
Climate changes may be wreaking havoc on the beaches where leatherback sea turtles nest. As sea levels rise and rain pounds on the sand, sea turtle nests get soggy. This could spell trouble for the charismatic reptile, which at six feet long, is the largest living turtle.

Under field and lab conditions, the scientists counted the number of live hatchlings that emerged. They then unearthed the nests to count the embryos that never hatched. Together, these numbers provided an overall survival rate for each incubation condition. A clear trend emerged: the wetter the sand, the lower the survival rate. On the wettest parts of the beach, no hatchlings survived at all.

These results, which will be published in the December issue of the Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, are not entirely surprising to scientists. According to Richard Reina, a marine biologist at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, the connection between climate change and lower hatchling survival rate was a “fairly easy inference to draw,” given previous knowledge of climate change’s effects on beach moisture.

jackredfield:

Mariposas en el Amazonas beben lágrimas de tortugas como fuente de sodio

Butterflies in the Amazon drink turtle’s teardrops, a source of sodium

Its true. Can happen in other locations as well. Another way turtles and torts serve their environments! #ShellsMatter 

Ironic tortoise should also provide an important reminder to owners to pay attention to the little things. 

While the instinct may be to snicker, when you see the headlines about the tortoise with a turtle inside, Lola’s story is also a cautionary tale for us tortoise parents. 

Grazing in the back yard involves noming on all sorts of things, like grass, plants, a rock or two … and includes anything intriguing that might be encountered in the process. The same goes for adventures around the house, things hidden in corners, anything in that area your tort hangs out in while you’re cleaning out the terrarium. 

In Lola’s case, a turtle pendant that lead to clever headlines, but also has her feeling really sick and her humans hoping it pass said turtle in leu of surgery. 

We owners have to pay attention to the little things, as in the ‘little things’ on the floor when your tortoise is wandering around, making sure no one has left any “little things” anywhere an adventurous shell might find themselves in the future (whether they are supposed to be there or not), and the ‘little things’ that change in our torties behavior  that might indicate that somethings wrong. Something to keep in mind when you read about Lola. Heres hoping you pass that turtle the traditional way!  

Ironic tortoise swallows turtle pendant, may need surgery, vet says

(Source Associated press via Newsdaily.com

MIAMI – The source of a sick tortoise’s discomfort became clear after a south Florida veterinarian took an X-ray: The animal had swallowed a turtle pendant.

Dr. Don Harris said the 15-pound male African spurred tortoise named Lola hadn’t pooped for a month and began acting sick over the weekend. Lola’s owner brought him to the Avian & Exotic Animal Medical Center in Miami, which Harris co-owns.

After an X-ray, Harris spotted the small, turtle-shaped object inside his patient.

Lola’s owner told Harris she didn’t recognize the pendant, but Harris said tortoises graze like cattle. They eat grass, plants and other vegetation, sometimes consuming rocks and other objects as well.

Harris is keeping Lola at his clinic, trying to get the pendant to pass. If that fails, surgery may follow.

Ironic tortoise should also provide an important reminder to owners to pay attention to the little things. 

While the instinct may be to snicker, when you see the headlines about the tortoise with a turtle inside, Lola’s story is also a cautionary tale for us tortoise parents. 

Grazing in the back yard involves noming on all sorts of things, like grass, plants, a rock or two … and includes anything intriguing that might be encountered in the process. The same goes for adventures around the house, things hidden in corners, anything in that area your tort hangs out in while you’re cleaning out the terrarium. 

In Lola’s case, a turtle pendant that lead to clever headlines, but also has her feeling really sick and her humans hoping it pass said turtle in leu of surgery. 

We owners have to pay attention to the little things, as in the ‘little things’ on the floor when your tortoise is wandering around, making sure no one has left any “little things” anywhere an adventurous shell might find themselves in the future (whether they are supposed to be there or not), and the ‘little things’ that change in our torties behavior  that might indicate that somethings wrong. Something to keep in mind when you read about Lola. Heres hoping you pass that turtle the traditional way!  

Ironic tortoise swallows turtle pendant, may need surgery, vet says

(Source Associated press via Newsdaily.com

MIAMI – The source of a sick tortoise’s discomfort became clear after a south Florida veterinarian took an X-ray: The animal had swallowed a turtle pendant.

Dr. Don Harris said the 15-pound male African spurred tortoise named Lola hadn’t pooped for a month and began acting sick over the weekend. Lola’s owner brought him to the Avian & Exotic Animal Medical Center in Miami, which Harris co-owns.

After an X-ray, Harris spotted the small, turtle-shaped object inside his patient.

Lola’s owner told Harris she didn’t recognize the pendant, but Harris said tortoises graze like cattle. They eat grass, plants and other vegetation, sometimes consuming rocks and other objects as well.

Harris is keeping Lola at his clinic, trying to get the pendant to pass. If that fails, surgery may follow.