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Scottish climate
Posted: 17/08/2013 by Amo and Archie

Hi. I've been carefully reading many of the forum postings for advice as i am the proud new owner of a 1 year old marginated tortoise. Forum is excellent but I find lots of confusing information on temperatures and indoor/outdoor access. It seems that torts need temperature to be over 18C but it is already only 11-15C during the day in our garden and this will continue to drop. We have an enclosed garden with lots of places to take shelter but I'm afraid of losing Archie in the bushes or him getting stuck under the shed and then not being able to take him in at night. What about foxes and cats - he's so small and vulnerable. We have an indoor rabbit enclosure with a mercury vapor lamp also, and our home temp is usually around 18C so do we really need to be using a heat lamp out with the winter months if tort is indoors? Any advice very gratefully received.

Re: Scottish climate
Posted: 20/08/2013 by Tom

Let's start outside. Start with a wooden sided enclosure, with wire netting on top. This you can part cover with clear polythene, twin wall poly carbonate, or Plexi-glass to increase the temp.. Long term, consider in part, using a walk-in mini poly-tunnel.
Shade temps in Dundee (for eg.) in the next 4 days average 18C, but torts warm up in full or hazy sun.
Indoors torts need a basking spot of about 28C, for about 8hrs daily. 18C is not a critical temp. for T.marginata, they can fall below whether night or day.
When you've had the tort for a few weeks, things will slot into place.
Surely the breeder has provided you with detailed info.
Subject to it's weight, you can give it a shortened hibernation, say Jan & Feb, as it's your 1st time.


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