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Posted: 21/05/2010 by Heatherstar

We have now had our Tortoise for four years and I haven't yet had the courage to hibernate him- if we lost him my son would be devastated!I really do want to try this winter as I know its the right thing to do.I have read your advice but am still worried! any further advice for the nervous me!

Re: Mrs
Posted: 22/05/2010 by tortoise7

Hi Heather
I was feeling exactly like you are, but how I learnt was by  reading about how you hibernate, over and over again until I felt that I fully understood it. Then I set about getting all the equipment I needed, (this was in the summertime by the way) e.g lots of thermometers, a new fridge without a freezer compartment (Argos sell them), a suitable box to hibernate in, good set of digital scales. This was so I could familiarise myself with them, and knew how to use them.  when the time got nearer, about 2 months before, I turned the fridge on, I put a box with a weight similiar to my tort inside, and then set to getting the temps stable, this can be achieved by putting bottles of water in the fridge.

When you are happy with your set up, then it is down to making sure that the tort is well, their weight is good, and maintaining that good weight before they go into the fridge. My rule is if ever I am in doubt, I do nought, so you always have that option.
Hope that has helped from a simplistic angle
Jane, Keya & Molly


Re: Mrs
Posted: 23/05/2010 by TPGDarren

Hi Heather,

Best to do as Jane said & get everything set up nice and early. If you choose fridge hibernation, which we recommend, your tortoise is going to spend 2-3 months in there. It isn't unreasonable to suggest that this should at least be the period of time the fridge is tested and tun for:-). We hear so many stories of people messing around with the thermostats on fridges at the last minute because they've not set their fridge up early enough. Our fridge runs here all year round, beers in the summer, tortoises in the winter:-)



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