Our Facility

Some outdoor pens have a removable shade cover and removable dividers to accommodate new intakes if necessary. Under the shade cover, we provide them with shallow water pans as well as a hide. Secondary fence is always locked to protect tortoises from any outside threats.
Individual pens are arranged for larger and more territorial species, such as sulcatas
Other pens have shade houses constructed out of wood.
Community pens are designed for the more social species. Here, this pen was planted with edible weeds. We will continue with this same seed mix throughout 
all the pens for following years.
We are working to provide safe shrubs for varied diet and more shade.
Our sulcata coming out of his wooden hide, which he loves to burrow into.

In the summer months, all tortoises are allowed outside full time, and only brought inside when weather is poor. This allows the tortoise to be exposed to natural sunlight as much as possible. It is well known that these animals require UV sources to produce Vitamin D3, which is necessary for proper calcium absorption.  While kept indoors, UV bulbs and/or oral vitamin D3 somewhat supplement this need, but can never compare to living outdoors in natural sunlight.  

Indoor enclosures are multi-level table-type setups. Screen surrounds each table for adequate air-flow and for the tortoise’s safety.
Another image of the indoor enclosures
Speedy, our large female russian, enjoying her time indoors out of the snow!
A few of our baby leopard tortoises enjoying the basking spot.
Our redfoot group absolutely loves the cover of fake plants. Tortoises are aware, by smell, that they are fake and not food. Don’t be afraid to add any fake plants to an enclosure because the added benefit of providing a sense of security is worth it. Of course real is always best, but big tortoises tend to destroy or trample real plants quite fast!

During the winter months, all of our tortoises are housed in a table-type setup. The sizes vary, but are generally 6’x3′ or 7’x4′. Substrate is usually a mix of coconut coir, organic soil, and a small amount of play sand. We generally add a reptile mat in the feeding area (to avoid the accidental ingestion of substrate). The lighting we use is a “combination” bulb, meaning they combine heat and UV source. These are 70-100W mercury vapor bulbs (MVB) by MegaRay. We also add a regular LED light for extra lighting – all set on automatic timers. We use heat guns to check the temperatures often. We also use a solarmeter reader to ensure MVBs are replaced when they are no longer working. The enclosures and tortoises are all religiously sprayed down 2 times a day, and water trays changed daily.