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Black Cherry Head Red Footed Tortoise: Geochelone Carbonaria
Category: Rare & Exotic
Experience Level: Starter [?]
Care Sheet: Red-Footed / Yellow-Footed Tortoise
Two years ago, we hatched our first Black Red Footed Tortoise, and naturally we wondered if it was possible to hatch a Black Cherry Head... we've never heard of one - and our breeding colony has no history of producing anything dark - so it was only something for our imaginations...
Then, on February 20th 2010, we hatched this very unusual tortoise from a small clutch of normal looking Cherry Heads - it's skin, plastron (bottom shell) and carapace (top shell) are all much darker than a normal Cherry head - and it's markings look more like a Leopard Tortoise than a Red Foot. At just over 3 weeks old, he's (it's clearly a male) doing very well - so we took a few shots to show him off... He is growing and becoming a little more outgoing each day; and will be ready to travel by April 1st. His behavior and requirements are identical to those of normal Cherry Heads, and follows:
Red-footed Tortoises are the inhabitants of the exotic Jungles of the Caribbean, central and south America. They are quite intelligent, they have good memory and learn rapidly where and when food is available; and where shelter and basking is to be found. They have a strong sense of smell, and their sense of touch includes even the slightest contact with their shell.
Grasses, clover hay, dark, leafy greens, (except for spinach) cactus, carrots and mixed vegetables are all good for Red-footed Tortoises. Sweet, red fruits are their favorites. Supplements that are high in calcium and low in phosphorus, are best for this hearty species.
Red-footed Tortoises do very well in community settings. With a little extra care, hatchlings thrive with other tortoises. Shallow, warm water soaking every third day, a warm basking spot and plenty of food is the key for these pretty starter tortoises.
Red-footed Tortoises are one of the most popular species kept the world over - and once you begin working with them, it's easy to see why.
* Remember, each Tortoise order comes with a free starter sample of the same Tortoise diet your Tortoise has been raised on - to order larger quantities, see the lower left side of this page. *
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