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Hermanns behaviour
Posted: 03/01/2012 by Mozla

While our tortoises are hibernating I just thought I would say a few words about our 3 yr old male hermanns behaviour to give us all a bit of a giggle ?

Percy loves climbing, on anything and often throws himself off most things that are a little too high and he usually lands face down on his substrate. He can reach up and pull himself up vertically as well, pretty astonishing really. He also loves a book put on an incline and will amuse himself trying to climb up it doing a very elegant breaststroke and totally loves sliding down it too! He will successfully complete a circuit of obstacles and will go round again in the same order!

On being a very active tortoise we let him out often and he prances about, high legged and moves quite fast. In the garden he has become a criminal genius as he will systematically look for escape routes to get where he wants to be. Suprisingly, sometimes he will follow you around as though he is being nosey and will also 'appear' to come when called.

He also appears to show some 'affection' too. He will nuzzle into you and loves his head and back legs being stroked, often stretching out for more. He also does that odd bum shuffle when you rub his shell. He genuinely appears happy most of the time and 'appears' to have a permanent grin on his face!

Bathing is the only thing we can be sure that he seems to dislike. We have replaced the bath with a bit more of a shower (with claws submerged) and that seems to be more agreeable to him. Before that it was a bit of a battle!

I thought I was seeing things but he has recently got in the habit of wanting to be out of his table and will reach up if he knows you are near and almost waves at you! If this doesn't work then a bit of a juvenile strop will usually do the trick. If this isn't successful then he appears to go into a huff and will turn his back on you or sit and glare at you!

We adore him and when we got him we were led to believe that tortoises were solitary animals that didn't really do much apart from eat and sleep. How wrong we were. Our tortoise seems to genuinely like our company and is very relaxed indeed. He seems to have behavioural characteristics that we can recognise and suprisingly can appear to communicate! 

That's more than can be said of our late hamster who just ran around and was nuts!

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Re: Hermanns behaviour
Posted: 03/01/2012 by midorigoi.1

Couldn't agree with you more , I thought they were slow and loners but 3 out of my 5 are attention seekers at the best of times especially the hermanns,I had a new arrival wake up earl last week and he seems to hate water as well as company but I'm not sure of how he was cared for before I got him but the others are characters , here's to many more years of fun and tantrums !

Re: Hermanns behaviour
Posted: 03/01/2012 by TPGDarren

Hahaha - he sounds a real knowing character:-)

Re: Hermanns behaviour
Posted: 03/01/2012 by tortoise7

Ahh thatis so cute, I think us tortoise owners know how intelligent they can be, after all when they are born they have to learn how to look after themselves, their mum's don't play any part in it. I know my Keya comes charging over when I go out to her, and Molly likes to sit on my feet
Has anyone else got some torty stories?

Re: Hermanns behaviour
Posted: 09/05/2012 by alibannani

my little girl (3yr old hermanns) is very much the same as yours. She adores climbing and exploring and we've made her a run in the garden which she loves.
the summer we first had her (aged 1) there was a small hole in the lawn where a rabbit had scratched up the grass and Ifutu, being the curious creature she is, walked over to have a look. deciding it was rather boring she walked away, but decided that the best route to her favorite hiding place (the hedge) was over the hole. Her front legs made the journey without mishap, her back were not so lucky and she landed rather neatly in the bottom of the hole. Before anyone starts ringing the RSPCA it was less than an inch deep - in case you're imagining some gaping ravine - but it was perfectly her size and we had to extract her by digging round the hole to enlarge it.
The family also has a dog who finds her rather fascinating. We never leave them alone together and all in all the dog (a very gentle mouthed 1 year old Labrador) leaves her alone. the first time the dog met her however she was obviously curious and licked her all down the spine from tail to head. Needless to say Ifutu didn't like that at all! The puppy is also now just tall enough to see into the tortoise table (a Guinea pig hutch) and spends hours watching her as she goes about her business.
So glad to have a forum to talk about these lovely creatures. I'm still at university and not in a position to have any more tortoises at the moment but i have visions of a garden full when i'm able!
Alex and Ifutu


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