Lighting, Temperature and Humidity
As always, natural sunlight should be utilized whenever possible and the tortoises fully benefit in many ways from being exposed to it. However, most people choose Greek tortoise for sale as it is considered a small tortoise for sale, or tiny tortoise so to speak. Keep in mind not all Greek tortoises are small. Ibera grow 8-12″ but some get even larger, like the Morrocan. Golden greek tortoise for sale are the smallest of the subspecies of Greeks. When housing them inside, proper UVB lighting is essential for keeping them healthy. Many options are available, such as daylight spot bulbs, infrared heat bulbs and fluorescent tube lighting.
Options include: Mercury vapor bulbs, which provide both UVA and UVB, are a personal favorite of mine. A 100- to 150-watt mercury vapor bulb installed above one end of the indoor tortoise enclosure creates a perfect basking area. It also lights up the enclosure nicely.
The opposite end should remain cool. Here at TT we USE t% high output UVB lamps at 10% or 12% depending on the distance from the Greek tortoise substrate.
You can also use a regular incandescent spot light for the basking area, so long as it reaches a temperature of 95 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. In this case, a fluorescent UVB-emitting bulb will need to be installed as well. The ambient room temperature where your indoor tortoise enclosure is located should remain between 75 and 85 degrees.
When raising hatchlings, a humidity level of between 65 and 70 percent is appropriate. This can be achieved by spraying down the enclosure every other day with warm water. A water dish in combination with a substrate that retains humidity (see following substrate section) will do the trick, as well. By keeping baby Greek tortoises well hydrated and at a sufficient humidity level, they will grow smoothly and retain a good weight.
Greek tortoise substrate and thermoregulation
Reasons for proper substrate include allowing the tortoise to properly thermoregulate. By bedding down, or digging down into the substrate the tortoise will be able to control its’ body temperature. In the evenings, or when it is colder, you may find your baby Greek tortoise dug into the substrate for warmth.
Greek tortoise substrate and humidity
By spraying the substrate of your baby tortoise habitat, you are able to keep it as a humid microclimate. Since the substrate holds water and allows it to slowly dry out or evaporate, this allows your tortoise to rehydrate slowly with humid air. Humidity is a huge concern for any species of baby tortoise for sale, and Greeks are no different!
The three best substrates for housing Greek tortoises indoors are cypress mulch, aspen shavings, or a 50/50 mix of top soil and play sand. When using aspen it is very important to make sure the tortoises stay hydrated because it tends to be very dry. Rabbit pellets are OK, but they do not retain humidity well and mold will grow quickly in soiled areas. Cedar and pine beddings absolutely must be avoided, as they are toxic to tortoises.
Be sure to check out our extensive Greek tortoise care pages, that focus on the following important topics for raising a healthy baby Greek tortoise:
Indoor Greek tortoise table
Indoors, the construction of a “tortoise table or tortoise house” will suit the needs of Greek tortoises well. A 3-by-6-foot unit made of plywood will suffice for a single adult and up to a pair of adults. Using real, untreated wood is always recommended over plastic or glass . We do this so that the tortoises cannot see through the habitats’ walls. This will also enable them to learn their boundaries and eventually they will not care to escape.
Larger tortoise houses are better
If you have any extra space, always make the tortoise habitat or enclosure as big as possible. This allows for a more natural behavior cycle and reduces stress, especially from territorial or aggressive specimens. Housing males together may pose a problem with them fighting relentlessly, especially when females are present. lastly, consider it important to give the tortoises as much space as possible because they could be spending months on end indoors. Do this until the weather outside is once again appropriate for keeping the tortoises outdoors. Consider getting your set up ready before searching for the perfect new tortoise for sale!