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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've had my tort Max for a week, and posted on here with pictures when I first got him (or her, but I think of him as a 'him'!), but some thought he looked like he had the start of pyramiding, and was advised it could be "fixable" by not overfeeding. He's a 2 year old Hermanns btw :2thumb:

Anyway, I've been feeding him on dandelion/endive/raddichio following the convention of enough food to make a jacket for his shell, but am worried I'm not giving him enough as he is losing weight.

Here are some pics of the general amount of food I give him, with limestone flour sprinkled on:-





I have been giving him a bath every other day, and weigh him afterwards, keeping a diary of everything. On July 31 he was 41g, August 5 was 39g, and today August 7 he was 38g. His carapace length (measured as linear length) is 65mm. Thats a 3g loss in a week!

Looking at my pics above, is this not enough food? as I would have thought he should be gaining weight and not losing it, or is this down to settling in stress or anything?
And is that enough limestone flour sprinkled on? didn't know if it should be a sprinkle or a coating.

I've been giving supplements of limestone flour on food every day, replacing it with nutrobal twice a week - does this sound correct?

Finally, what sort of weight should he be for his 65mm length? Here's some pics of him from the side as I've heard the shell shape is important in deciding healthy weights....





Thanks in advance for any info, as I'm new to keeping torts, and it is quite worrying he is losing weight, but at same time want to avoid pyramiding through overfeeding.
 

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how about giving him a bowl of veg so he can munch when he wants to rather than rashioning him
 

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Give him more to eat than that but spread it around his enclosure and make him work to find it, that way he gets to get all the goodness but without the lazy attitude to feeding and subsequent weight gain. Whoever started that jacket theory is just plain barmy. What about thickness of leaf, water content, fiber content!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Cheers SuBo, thats a good idea to hide it around the place and make him hunt it down, but how much more than that in pics should I give him.... half as much again? twice as much?
 

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I put half on mine's slate bit and chuck the first in pieces around their enclosures so they'll stumble upon it when wandering around. If its any help a poo can make a difference to a weigh in and also mine normally lose a little bit when they first go outside cos of the extra exercise they're getting I presume as its happened last year and this.

Mr Bee thats a very gorgeous little torty you have there :2thumb:
 

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how about giving him a bowl of veg so he can munch when he wants to rather than rashioning him
Veg is not suitable tortoise food, better with edible weed and flowers.

Ours have some plants in their enclosures that they like to nibble at as they wander round, but if they find a campanula they dont stop till its all gone! :lol2:
 

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do you put him out side on nice days to feed on clover and other weeds??
 

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Cheers SuBo, thats a good idea to hide it around the place and make him hunt it down, but how much more than that in pics should I give him.... half as much again? twice as much?
Double but give him more fibrous stuff like natural weeds. I would check his weight gain monthly to see if this seems about right.
 

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I'd try to give him more variety in his diet, both lettuce family leaves don't have much in them and dandelion being a slight dioretic will make him loose more water so none of the foods are weight producing. (or at least thats my opinium) there are still plenty of different weeds plants about so I'd say have a look through the food lists and see what else you can find to feed. Ideally we should aim for at least 5 different leaves/flowers a day and try to vary them from day to day so you might find he'll gain weight with more substancial fibrous foods.
 

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First of all i want to say that tortoise is adorable!!!!!

I would offer him more food than that to be honest - mine stomp round when they are hungry. As someone has already mentioned it is really good to spread the food around the enclosure so the tortoise has to search for it!!

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone, I'll give him more food each day. But my weed seeds are still only little shoots, and I really only get dandelion growing naturally in the garden and around.

Does anyone have loads of spare suitable weeds they could send me....

Well there's other plants which are probably weeds but I'm not sure I can identify what they are. Dandelion is the only one I can identify for sure and know it's safe to eat; don't want to feed him something that's not safe.

I have a bit of White flowered clover in a tub with some herbs, but that soil has had miracle grow in it!!
 

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feeding dandelion is not good every day maybe a couple times a week,if your unsure about weeds buy a book on weeds, thats what i did , i think smiths or john menzies does one for about £3.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I've got a bit of an outdoor enclosure built for him now, so he can go outside safely when its not raining or cold....



On the topic of food though, I have quite a bit of this, but don't know if its safe:-










Any ideas?
 
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