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Poor Thing
Posted: 13/02/2009 by Shelbyville

Yesterday we went to our local garden centre and found a very sad looking tortoise in a perspex enclosure. It was either a Graeca Graeca or Graeca Ibera. It did have a basking lamp and a pool of water but they were feeding it on tortoise pellets and iceberg lettuce,tomatoes carrotts and cucumber. both my husband and I were so saddened we left without buying what we had gone for. What really maddened me was they were selling pansies and petunia seedlings and prickly pear in the garden centre part but didn't obviously know what they ought to feed it. They had lots of different types of baby turtles too! 

I am angry that it is not hard or time consuming to find out what to feed tortoises on. A five minute stint of surfing the web will point you in the right direction. And surely if you are selling them you should be able to advise the purchasers correctly. They are obviously just too lazy and the poor tortoise suffers for it. Click and drag me down to the editor

Re: Poor Thing
Posted: 13/02/2009 by tpgNina

It is maddening, isn't it?! One thing you could do is to give Julie Sankey ( -- sorry this isn't live, but you can cut and paste it) the details of the Garden Centre and she will send them the new Tortoise Trust booklet on caring for tortoises. Of course you can't guarantee that they will read it, but if you had her send the booklet to you (it's free), and you took it in and nicely explained to them that their tortoise husbandry could be improved, and gave them the booklet -- they just might read it.

There is a small problem in giving the tortoises leaves and flowers from the garden centre, in that the plants might have been sprayed with insecticide at some point and really should be grown on until new growth appears. Cacti should be fine, as I don't think they ever get sprayed. I'll bet they have some weeds growing on the grounds of their centre somewhere too!


Re: Poor Thing
Posted: 15/02/2009 by Shelbyville

Hi Nina,

I contacted Julie as you suggested and she is going to send out some leaflets to the garden centre concerned. I feel now there is more chance of the little tortoise there having a better quality of life.


Re: Poor Thing
Posted: 15/02/2009 by tpgNina

That's great, Rachel. Of course we can't guarantee that the staff there will actually read the pamphlets, or follow the advice, but it's a good start, and you might just have made a difference in those little torts' lives.



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