Meet Our Animals – Red Foot Tortoises

Meet Our Animals – Red Foot Tortoises

Every now and then we will be giving you some fact about our animals that will help you get to know them.

 

Today’s animals are Jess and Georgie our red foot tortoises.

 

George and Jess 2

Jess and George are 6 years old (Born 2011) and were born in captivity.

They like most red foot tortoises have lots of character and are every lively. In the wild they walk for miles searching for food that they scavenge from the floor such as fruits, vegetation and even the occasional baby mouse.

Fruits-and-Vegetables

Jess and Georgie are reptiles so they are not able to regulate their blood temperature being cold blooded. The often bath in the sun to warm themselves up or hide in the shade to cool down.

hot and cold

Red foot tortoises like Jess and Georgie in the wild come from the Amazon rain forest, where it is hot and humid. We replicate that in their vivarium by providing heat, humidity and UV light so they stay healthy.

amazon rainforest

They can grow to the size of a dinner plate and live to 50 years.

dinner plate

It can be difficult to find out which is boy and girl when younger. When they are 5+ it is easier and you can tell by the different shapes. Females have much shorter tails and the males have a concave plastron. Red Foot Tortoises can’t be sexed until they reach 6-7” as it can be difficult to do this accurately before they reach this size.
Check out the picture below so you can see visually what we are talking about.

refoot_tortoise_sexing

 

So there are some facts about our Red Foot Tortoises Jess and Gerogie. Want to meet them and learn more why not check out our website at www.pbanimaladventures.co.uk or see what Georgie and Jess get up to on our Facebook page at  https://www.facebook.com/pbanimaladventures/

 

See you guys and girls soon.

YT-5

 

Our Giant African Millipede Cedric

Our Giant African Millipede Cedric

We have had Cedric our Giant African Millipede Cedric for 2 1/2 years and he is a popular part of our animal family attending birthday parties, corporate events, schools and clubs, per-schools etc.

 

Cedric comes from East Africa in places such a Mozambique and Kenya. His species is mostly found living in forests.

africa-eastern-region-map

 

His species of millipede is one of the largest growing up to 38.5 centimeters long.

millepede on hand

 

His defense if he feels threatened is to curl up into a tight spiral exposing only their exoskeleton and secreting a smelly liquid that can be irritating.

millepde curl up

 

Millipedes eat all sorts of food including bananas, tomatoes, lettuce, apples, cucumbers, fruits, vegetables. They also need a supply of calcium which can be added to their diet in the form of calcium powder or a cuttle fish.

Millipede eating

 

Cedric is a popular part of our events and the children find him fascinating.

 

Caterpillers 6

 

Want to meet and find out more about Cedric, than book us now at www.pbanimaladventures.co.uk

 

Interesting facts children learn about our animals when booking us at their birthday parties

Interesting facts children learn about our animals when booking us at their birthday parties

As well as having lots of fun, we aim for children booking us at birthday parties and events to discover something new about the animals they encounter making an experience they will not forget.

Here is 5 of those facts you can discover at your birthday party or event.

 

Fact 1 – Leopard Geckos detach their tails when they are trying to get away from their predators which are snakes, foxes and other large reptiles. The tails do grow back but not fully and this can be stressful to the leopard gecko because their tails store a lot of their food reserves.

Leopard Gecko blog

 

Fact 2 – Hedgehogs spikes are made of really thick hair (keratin), which Is the same stuff as what human hairs and finger nails are made of. They are able to use these hairs to protect themselves by using the muscle under the spikes to make the spikes stick out.

hedgehog blog

 

Fact 3 – Degus have 15 different sounds that they use to communicate with. Degus are very sociable animals that live in groups. To be able to communicate well with each other they use different sounds in various ways to mean different things.

Degu Blog

 

Fact 4 – Cockroaches can live for up to two weeks without their heads, because they have breathing holes in different segments of their bodies. The reason the cockroaches eventually die is because they become dehydrated with not being able to drink without a head.

cockroaches Blog

 

Fact 5 – Millipedes (Latin word for a thousand feet) actually don’t have 1000 legs. They actually have anywhere from 40 to 400 legs.

Cedrib Blog

 

If you want to learn more interesting facts about the animals we have at PB Animal Adventures why not book us now at www.pbanimaladventures.co.uk

How to look after a Redfoot tortoise

How to look after a Redfoot tortoise

Red Foot Tortoises are the more curious personalities of the various types of tortoise and are a joy to keep as pets.
They do however require proper housing to meet their needs and a good stable diet.
It is important to do your research before deciding if the Red Foot tortoise is the right pet for you, so we at PB Animal Adventures would like to offer you our advice on this to help you out by answering the most frequently asked questions we have from our customers that book us for birthday parties etc.

Tortoises

How big do Red Foot Tortoises get?
They tend to grow to about 12-18” which is approximately the size of a dinner plate.

 

How long do they live?
Red Foot Tortoise can live for up to 50 years, if not a bit longer in captivity.

 

How can you tell the difference between a male and a female?
Females have much shorter tails and the males have a concave plastron. Red Foot Tortoises can’t be sexed until they reach 6-7” as it can be difficult to do this accurately before they reach this size.
Check out the picture below so you can see visually what we are talking about.

refoot_tortoise_sexing

 

What type of housing is best for my tortoise?
Most people recommend a vivarium so that the humidity can be easily maintained.
The most recommended size of vivarium is (48″x24″x24″) as this enable the tortoise enough room to explore and move around. We often have the tortoises out exploring our HQ to enable them to be stimulated and exercise providing it’s not too cold in the office.
The tortoise should have a shallow water bowel for them to maintain hydration. (Must be shallow to prevent them from drowning).
There should be a UVB light which synthesises sun rays and therefore Vitamin D, enabling the tortoises to metabolise calcium (helping them to grow). Without the UVB light the tortoise will develop serious disease problems. The bulb needs changing every 6-8 months, as although they look like they are doing their job, the UV is less effective after this time.
Tortoises like to have shelter in their vivarium so they have a place to hide and relax. There are lots of inventive ways you can do this; we use bricks as you can see in the photo below as the tortoises can’t move them as they are too heavy.

Set Up

 

What humidity would is best for my tortoise?
Redfoot tortoises come from South America with their habitats being anything from grasslands to humid rainforests.
When we first got our Red Foot Tortoises we found lots of conflicting advice about the humidity levels and housing for them on the internet and from vets we asked.
The best advice we can give you is try the basic recommendations that are about to follow and adapt them to what your tortoise responds to better, meaning remaining healthy and active. This has worked well for us and we have really healthy tortoises.
Most people recommend a vivarium so that the humidity can be controlled with a bit more ease. Most also recommend a humidity level of 70-80% which can be measured with a hydrometer.
We found that a couple of shallow water bowls and a spray of the enclosure 2-3 times a week maintain the humidity well.
It is important to ensure you don’t go overboard with trying to keep the vivarium humid as this can cause the tortoise respiratory problems.

 

What Substrate do we use?

We use orchid bark as we find this helps with the humidity and is easy to keep clean.

 

What temperature should I keep my Red Foot Tortoises Vivarium?
We use a basking lamp on a thermostat linked to a temperature gauge that sits within the vivarium to maintain a good temperature. The Vivarium should be big enough to enable the tortoise to choose to warm itself in the warm end where the basking lamp is or the cooler end.
It is recommended that during the day the temperature is maintained at 29-32 °c and at night around 20 – 27°c. The thermostat will help you achieve this with ease.

We also have a thermometer at each end of the vivarium as a back up to gauge the temperature just in case the thermostat is not working correctly.

Thermometer

What do I feed a Red Foot Tortoise?
Red Foot Tortoises like any other animal like a variety of foods and will get bored if fed the same old things all of the time.
Red foot tortoises are omnivorous and will occasionally feed on small animals such as mice, rats and chicks (Usually found dead on the ground their travels). They eat vegetables including dandelion, clover, honeysuckle, leafy salads, watercress, brussel tops, spring greens, coriander, parsley, rocket, carrot, parsnip, courgette, peppers. They eat non-citric fruits such as papaya, mango, apples, strawberries, blackberries, cactus fruit and tomatoes. Ones to avoid include cabbage, spinach, onion, tomato, buttercup, citric fruits and iceberg lettuce. Also dust the vegetables with Nutrobal before putting them in a food dish.
Tortoise pellet foods can be used as a treat for your tortoise; however we would not recommend this as a regular substitution for fresh foods.

We also use a cuttlefish bone as another source of calcium and also helps their mouths.

Does a Red Foot Tortoise need to hibernate?
The simple answer is no.
Red foot tortoises are one of the few types of tortoise that do not need to hibernate.

 

Where do I buy my tortoise from?
There are many reputable breeders around the UK that will ensure you are sold tortoises that are captive bred and not wild caught, come with the correct documentation needed, ensure all perspective owners are ready to receive their tortoises and offer you good advice on how to look after your tortoise.
WARNING – A reputable breeder will NOT send you tortoises via a carrier as this is not ethical.

 

5 of the weirdest animals you wouldn’t find at an animal themed birthday party

As you all know weird can be wonderful sometimes.
Here are the 5 most weird and wonderful animals that we think are great.

1) The Aye-aye
These delightful little creatures come from Madagascar and are nocturnal. They are primates that have a nifty way of getting their food. They tap on trees to find grubs and then use their teeth to nosh through and so they can use their very long middle finger to whip out those yummy grubs.
The Aye-aye is an endangered creature and certainly one we would love to see thrive again in the wild.

aye aye
2) Tarsier
These wide eyed creature are not only unusual but the cutest things you have ever seen. Also primates the Tarsier can be found in the Islands of South East Asia.
Each eyeball on these adorable creatures are approximately 16mm in diameter which is about the size of their brains.

Bohol_Tarsier

 

3) The Blobfish

The blob fish are very rarely seen by us humans due to them living in the deep depths of the ocean.
The blob fish has a density that is slightly less than water in order to keep its shape and withstand the pressure in the depth of the ocean, making its jelly like appearance.
Not the prettiest of creatures, however they do have top marks for individuality.

blobfish

 

4) Bergamasco Shepherd

These dogs are not like any other by any means.
Their appearance is very deliberate to allow them to protect sheep as predators often mistake the Bergamasco Shepherd for a sheep. With the Bergamasco being very capable of defending itself, those pesky predators will think twice before going near the sheep the dogs are looking after.

These shaggy creatures originate from the Italian Alps and although they do their guard duties very well they are very patient with good self-control, a good companion for some humans.

Bergamasco_shepherd_dog_-_merle_female_cropped
5)  Lowland Streaked Tenrec
These prickly little creatures are found only in the rainforests of Madagascar and is similar to a porcupine. The barbs on the Lowland Streaked Tenrec’s back act as a defence and a very unusual and complex communication system. The quills produce a faint chattering sound when they vibrate and different sounds indicate different meanings allowing them to communicate with each other.

Lowland Streaked Tenrec

 

So there it is, 5 weird and wonderful creatures that we at PB Animal Adventures find fascinating.

If you want to meet some other fun and fascinating animals why not book your adventures with us at PB Animal Adventures.