Sulcata Tortoises Need a Lot of Room — Moving Our Male Sulcata to His New Enclosure

Posted by Diedra Blackmill on Oct 10th 2019

Sulcata Tortoises Need a Lot of Room — Moving Our Male Sulcata to His New Enclosure

In case you didn’t see it on our Facebook page recently, the team at the Tye-dyed Iguana just moved our male sulcata tortoise to a new enclosure. It was a bit of an ordeal, but as you may know, sulcata tortoises are pretty large, and between the two of them in our original enclosure, they just needed more space.

Based on our trial and error, here are some tips we can give you if you need to move a large tortoise…

Tip #1 Letting the tortoise walk to the new enclosure on their own takes forever

Some of the team members thought the humane (and let’s face it, easy) thing to do would be to just let our guy walk himself over to the new enclosure. The problem with that was the tortoise had little motivation to go anywhere and just wanted to stay right where he was.

You could try this, and staff even tried adding a snack as a lure, but however you do it this method is slow. Even though sulcatas can get up to pretty decent speeds when they’re motivated, it’s unlikely that your priorities are going to match with your pet’s priorities.

Tip #2 Remember that sulcata tortoises are HEAVY

The team thought another easy method be to just pick up the tortoise and carry him to his new home…And so they tried that. No luck.

Male sulcatas can reach up to 200 pounds. So for the average person, carrying them may not be the best option.

Tip #3 Tortoises are stubborn

At one point in the process, the Tye-Dyed team members decided to just slide the tortoise across the floor. But in between these helpful “boosts”, he just tried to turn around and go the other way.

Tip #4 Try changing the tortoise’s name

Somehow the TDI tortoise got his name changed during the course of his move. Not sure if that helped speed him up, but you could sure try it.

Tip #5 If all else fails, get your pet some wheels

The Tye-Dyed team didn’t end up going this route, but if you have a large enough dolly or flatbed for moving large objects like furniture, you could load your tortoise up on one of those and wheel them to their new location. It’s certainly the faster option.

In the end, our team stuck with taking the tortoise for a walk, coaxing him along the way with some tasty greens and keeping him on track by walking alongside him. It did take a while, but it ensured a stress-free move for our big guy.

Come check out the new enclosure at our exotic pet store. Frank (or Mitch…) always appreciates a good scratch on the butt.

You can watch the full video of our sulcata tortoise’s move by clicking the video link below:

https://www.facebook.com/tyedyediguana/videos/1134465770081941/

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