Things Pet Owners Must Know About Sulcata Tortoise

For those who are interested in owning Sulcata tortoise, there are a few things that must be considered before one makes a decision. Since this kind of creature has a long lifespan much longer than humans have, much attention is needed in making these creatures even healthier and thus, people will have a more time to spend with them.

Although baby sulcata are adorable and are very small and can easily fit into one’s hand, they will eventually get big a lot bigger. Sulcatas are the third largest types of tortoises across the world. The species and Aldabra and Galapagos tortoises are the only big tortoises that can be usually seen in zoos across the world.

An average sulcata tortoise can grow as much as 18 inches or 45 cm with the length of their shell or around 70 to 100 pounds or 30 to 45 kg of weight. Several tortoises can get even larger depending on certain species.

Sulcata can also grow quickly. Like a desert species of tortoises, they can develop to cope with sparse and erratic supplies of food. If in captivity, as a form of response to regular and abundant food supplies, sulcata have a tendency to grow very fast, so they really reach their adult size within just five or about 10 years, unlike their relatives in the wild that it takes around 20 to 50 to reach their mature size. This reality attracts many aspirant owners very interested, considering that most pet shop staffs more often than not tell possible buyers to grab one and bring them home.

Generally, tortoises are good companions especially for those who are interested in having slow but big and gentle animals in their lawn. One of the best qualities is their friendliness and sluggishness. But these qualities seemed not to attract most people. For some, a too slow animal is not totally attractive and appealing creature for some.

Shelter and Housing

Most people erroneously think that tortoises particularly sulcata, should be placed at hotter areas since they’re desert animals. This isn’t the case after all. Once the temperature decreases below 85 degrees F. Sulcatas will really look for shelter in the heat within their underground burrows, and they’ll stay underground right up until temperatures drops to bearable levels. Tortoises in the wild avoid the mid-day sun as well as heat, and only coming above-ground to enjoy and drink fresh water in the morning or in later day just after the temperatures starts to drop.

Be sure your tortoise can access cooler places or shade in order that it can cool off at the appropriate time. Evening temperatures needs to be below the day temperatures, but must not be allowed to fall below 60 degrees.


At some time, the tortoise will grow big enough that it’ll be bothersome to keep them indoors. During these moments, you will have to build a well heated, safe tortoise shed that will serve as being the tortoise’s home at night.

Since they’re from the semi-arid, very sunny surroundings, sulcatas need a lot of light to keep active and healthy; without substantial light amounts, these animals may become lethargic. Sulcata also needs to be exposes to UVB light to enable them to generate proper amounts of Vitamin D3 within their bodies. The Vitamin D3 is important for the efficient metabolism of varied nutrients and chemicals in their body such as calcium from the food they eat– tortoises that are lacking the enough amounts of Vitamin D3 can’t develop healthy bones as well as shells, regardless of how much calcium these animal eat in a regular basis.

Additionally, sunlight could be the single best supply of UVB radiation, therefore, the best and most secure method to supply Vitamin D3 for a tortoise would be to let it go outside and stay exposed to the sun not less than 20 minutes each day. If this isn’t possible in your area, then you should supply the tortoise with the synthetic UVB light supply as an alternative.