You're in > TPG Members Forum > Tortoise Care, Health/Problems > herman eating probs

herman eating probs
Posted: 26/03/2011 by Maddy

Hi everyone,

I got my 2 Herman's (Twinkle & Nugget) a month ago from a UK breeder. They are around 8 months old. Someone recommended this site to me and I have been browsing it over the last couple of weeks but this is my first post.

When we got them the breeder weighed them for us and recommended that we weigh them once a month. We gave them their first weigh this morning and were shocked to discover that whilst Twinkle has put on 3g (now weighs 58g) Nugget has lost 5g!(now weighs 46g) This means that there is now a 12g difference between them. Whilst we were aware that Twinkle was bigger than Nugget we hadn't realised that Nugget had lost weight. After the weigh in we put Nugget back in the tortoise table with some dandelion leaves and watched her eat. She seemed to have a healthy appetite but was picking at the food rather than stuffing it in her mouth which is what Twinkle does. Nugget also seems to have problems getting the food into her mouth sometimes (she bites at the food but doesn't get it in) - not sure whether she may be has a sight problem? Also when we then put Twinkle in she went towards the food and Nugget stopped eating and moved away from the food, but when we hand fed Nugget some food she happily started eating it. Therefore we think what is happening is that Twinkle is eating faster than Nugget and Nugget is not getting as much food, hence the difference in weight.

The problem we have is that we don't have time during the week to feed them separately. We don't really want to separate them as this would mean finding space for a second tortoise table & the additional cost of heating & lighting it. Also we're worried that if we separate them then if we try and put them back together at a later date they might fight.

Has anyone got any ideas/advice.

Thanks,

Maddy Click and drag me down to the editor

 

Re: herman eating probs
Posted: 26/03/2011 by VivTPG

Hi Maddy Click and drag me down to the editor to our site.

Try not to worry to much, it may be the stress of moving, plus some torts are naturally bigger and grow faster than others.

Could you divide the table top off with a piece of wood or something just at feed time and feed them separately just for a month to see if this helps. Remove the barrier after 20 minutes, by that time they will have eaten what they want.

Also, have a word with the breeder, who will know the eating habits of the tort for the last 8 months.

Please let us know how you get on, regards Vivienne 

Re: herman eating probs
Posted: 27/03/2011 by tortoise7

Hi Maddy
Glad you made it to the site!
Ghosh that month has gone quick.
Regarding missing the food, Keya & Molly do that sometimes, so that can be natural, the way I deal with it is to put the feeding slate up against a divider so that it can't keep moving about too much. Another suggestion to the feeding regime, do they have their own feeding trays/slates? this might help. With the weight, just something to take into account is when you weigh them, is it before or after a bath and had they just wee'd or poo'd, in little ones that can make a big difference, also try to weigh them the same time e.g. before or after their bath. Personally when Keya was tiny I weighed her every week, which gave me a better idea on how the feeding was going, especially as you are a bit concerned at the moment. These are just things to think about and then for you to decide whether there is a problem or not. Like Vivienne said have a word with Lynn she will be more than happy to help you.
HTH
Jane, Keya & Molly

Re: herman eating probs
Posted: 27/03/2011 by Maddy

Hi guys,

Thanks for your advice. It's put our minds at ease a little. We weighed them after their bath. One of them had wee'd in the bath but not sure which one so if it was Nugget I guess that could account for some of the weight loss. After their bath this morning I put Nugget back on the table before Twinkle again so she could get a head start with the food. This seems to work but not sure whether I'll have time to do this or not during the week. We might try the separate feeding slate idea and see how that works. Nugget seems active and healthy in all other respects so hopefully if we just keep an eye on her and make sure she's getting her fair share of the food then she'll be ok.

Thanks again,

Maddy Click and drag me down to the editor

 

Re: herman eating probs
Posted: 27/03/2011 by tortoise7

Hi Maddy
I am sure they will settle down soon and start to get their routine going. Keep up with the updates
Jane, Keya & Molly

 

Web Design Bristol