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Old 07-12-2019, 05:28 PM   #1
Julia
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Question Hatchling hibernating???

I'd appreciate some advice please on Herman's babies:

I was lucky enough to have 3 babies hatch last September. They have never been very active, mainly sleeping and just coming out to feed.
They weigh between 18 and 21 grams.
In the last 2 weeks they seem to be even less active. 2 of them often don't come out of their hide to feed at all, just sleeping day and night.
Is this something to do with their instinct to hibernate, or should I wake them up every day, to ensure they feed and bath? I think they are too young to hibernate, and I'm keeping a heat lamp on during the day, at around 27 degrees, which must be too warm for them to hibernate anyway.
What should I do?
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:09 PM   #2
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If it's only 27 then that's why they are not very active. You really need to be up in the low 30s and also not to cold at night. Can you tell us a bit more on you set up and temps.
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Old 07-12-2019, 07:53 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julia View Post
I'd appreciate some advice please on Herman's babies:

I was lucky enough to have 3 babies hatch last September. They have never been very active, mainly sleeping and just coming out to feed.
They weigh between 18 and 21 grams.
In the last 2 weeks they seem to be even less active. 2 of them often don't come out of their hide to feed at all, just sleeping day and night.
Is this something to do with their instinct to hibernate, or should I wake them up every day, to ensure they feed and bath? I think they are too young to hibernate, and I'm keeping a heat lamp on during the day, at around 27 degrees, which must be too warm for them to hibernate anyway.
What should I do?
They are never too young to hibernate:0)
Just wondering what you think they do in the wild:0)
When temps are not high enough they they will be lathagic and slow down. So low temps and dull light will send them into hibernation mode.
You have two choices, up the temps during the day to at least 32c with a background heat of at least 25c. Also you probably will need an extra light sorce. This can be any spotlight to make it brighter.
Or hibernate them.
Its normally keepers that are too scared to hibernate hatchlings sized tortoises. But with careful monitoring it can be done. I always hibernated my smaller tortoises when I used to breed them.
Windown for small tortoises is shorter than adults, non feeding for three weeks, and eight weeks actual hibernation, but if all is well another couple of hibernation weeks is fine.
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Old 08-12-2019, 12:32 PM   #4
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little ones need to be heated up as they will get too cold to move otherwise. but not continually heated otherwise they will dry out and die. think crocodile in the wild just sits there til the temps get warmer then they move a bit, they have lots of nice water to keep hydrated though. CB
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Old 08-12-2019, 04:05 PM   #5
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Hi all,
Thanks for your advice there.

My heat lamp is over some stone slabs which heat up very hot, must be well over 30, but this doesn't seem to make any difference to them. The rest of the table is just covered with newspaper. They have branches, and terracotta pieces to hide under, and a dark covered area, which they sleep in now.
I also have a bright UV lamp over their table.
One of them comes out briefly in the mornings, eating a few bites, but the other 2 just sleep.
If I want to keep them up should I wake them and give them a bath, even when half asleep?
If I fully hibernate them would their low weight provide enough reserves to keep them alive?

Sorry about so many questions, but I have not had hatchlings before.
Thanks again.
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Old 08-12-2019, 04:28 PM   #6
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no problem with questions ! we all love questions. We have all learnt how to do a gall bladder extraction on here these days and I suspect next is a heart bypass.
Ok probably move your stones as these can get piping hot and their little clawsies or under shell can get a tad hot or burn...don't panic - they will be fine. I would say some little coco soil under the lamp works wonders, making it all nice and snug. I personnaly would keep them up - over winter them. If they are sleepy draws in the mornings a most little ones are I would definitely get them up and put them under the lamps) check they haven't been under and gone for a cool down) and out some nice florette sprayed with water in front of them. even stick it under their noses and wave about - once you do this some times it will set a routine of feeding time , getting up etc. Don't worry they sleep a lot - that's what tortoises do and the smaller ones a renowned for it.
Paper can cause stones later on (see we have a theme here Gordon can talk to you about). but is fine short to medium term. plenty of water available and bathing too. tepid water once aday if small. lots of spraying probably twice a day to keep humidity up. spray the food too that's a good way of getting water in if they don't drink much, have fun ! relax a bit and weigh them - weekly at least. they should put on a bit each week, (ish), don't overfeed otherwise Sandy will be on to you ! good advice obviously from Sandy CB
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Old 08-12-2019, 04:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julia View Post
Hi all,
Thanks for your advice there.

My heat lamp is over some stone slabs which heat up very hot, must be well over 30, but this doesn't seem to make any difference to them. The rest of the table is just covered with newspaper. They have branches, and terracotta pieces to hide under, and a dark covered area, which they sleep in now.
I also have a bright UV lamp over their table.
One of them comes out briefly in the mornings, eating a few bites, but the other 2 just sleep.
If I want to keep them up should I wake them and give them a bath, even when half asleep?
If I fully hibernate them would their low weight provide enough reserves to keep them alive?

Sorry about so many questions, but I have not had hatchlings before.
Thanks again.
If the slabs are thick then the heat will disapate over them. If thin then the slab will be too hot.
Newspaper is not a good substrate they need to be able to dig down or into the soil.
I would bathe them more regularly if possible, as they might well be dehydrated.
Also ambiant temps need to be higher too.
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Old 09-12-2019, 04:36 PM   #8
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Thanks, I'll give all this a try.
I haven't even seen 2 of them for a few days now, they seem so fast asleep. Could they be hibernating in this warm environment?

I'll try and wake them up tomorrow morning and see what they want to do after a bath.
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Old 09-12-2019, 08:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Thanks, I'll give all this a try.
I haven't even seen 2 of them for a few days now, they seem so fast asleep. Could they be hibernating in this warm environment?

I'll try and wake them up tomorrow morning and see what they want to do after a bath.
Its dangerous to hibernate any tortoise that might have food in their stomachs:0)
They need to go at least three weeks without any food, and the first week with temps of 32c to make sure any food is digested.
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Old 10-12-2019, 05:27 PM   #10
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Thanks for all your advice.
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