at Tue Jul 24 11:25:23 2012 [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by psycho_squamata ]
I hope all is well at your end.
I have some questions regarding a Indotestudo elongata (elongated tortoise) that I have acquired about 45 days ago.
A little background info:
I´ve been living in Shanghai - China for a little less than a year now. As you can imagine, China is a very disturbing place when it comes to animal abuse in general. There are "pet markets" here where you find Red-eared sliders being sold in little plastic bubbles about as long as the turtle itself and other unsettling sights. I don´t want to get into that right now, but trust me when I say it is disturbing.
I live nearby one of these markets. I actually had no idea that I live near one until I accidently decided to take a short cut through a back alley. I admired the horribly dirty enclosures and murky aquariums for a bit, I had no intention of purchasing any of those poor creatures but then I walked past a booth specialized in Chelonia; quite a sad sight indeed. I saw a juvenile (nearly an adult) tortoise which at first I thought was a Travancore tortoise because of its yellowish head. It was living in a glass bowl kept on the floor, my mandarin is quite poor but I managed to pull the owner of the fine establishment away from his card game in order to tell the price. Westerners in China get ripped off at all times, that´s just how things go around here. So I was ready to hear some absurd price, but nothing could have prepared me for the ridiculous price of 300 Yuan (about 46 USD) thrown at me with a smirk. I walked away and promised not to go back. However 2 days later there I was bargaining with the same fellow, I eventually purchased the animal after a few discounts. The fellow picked up the dehydrated tortoise and placed in plastic bag, not without wrapping it around a few times.
I was able to purchase some de Zoo Med Mite Off which I applied to the animal right after a good soak. I applied again about 48 hours later. I was also able to get some Zoo Med Natural Forest Tortoise Food, which I first thought the animal would gobble insanely due to its bad shape and the lack of food during its stay in the market .
I placed the animal on my balcony where there is plenty of sun light and room, I also supplied a water source, I keep a small area of the balcony flooded so that the animal can soak. I have experience with Red-footed tortoises and I thought that this one would demand about the same energy and effort.
It did not eat for the first few days, I figured it must have been stressed so I waited and kept placing it in a warm bath every day to at least keep it hydrated. Upon further research I found that the animal is actually an Elongated tortoise, the yellow head was quite an evidence. I could not observe the animal eating at all for the next days, I tried feeding it several types of local leafy greens, fruits of all sorts, but always tried to steer clear of any animal protein. Still not eating at all, every morning when I check on it the food is untouched and it is just basking or hiding in its shell. The animal is now getting noticeably weaker and thinner. No sign of any pyramiding.
I will post pictures soon – a female (flat plastron) Indotestudo elongata of about 23 centimeters in length.
I would appreciate any assistance and suggestions on how to solve the eating problem, please be aware that this is certainly a wild caught animal and that I reside in China, so pet supplies are limited.
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