This will be a short, but important post on what you can expect your Redfoot tortoise to look like at various stages of its life by following the diet and husbandry I have used and suggest to you.
The diet of the Redfoot tortoise should be 60% fruit, 35% greens, and 5% animal protein. This diet replicates as much as is possible in captivity their wild diet.
It’s what I’ve used for the 12+ years of my keeping Redfoot tortoises and the pictures below show you want yours should look like if you do the same.
This first picture is one of my hold back’s that hatched in late 2012 and at the time of this picture was roughly 7 month sold. Notice the perfect carapace, no pyramiding in the least.
This next picture is one the 2 year old Redfoot’s I recently sold to a family in Florida.
Again, you can see that 2 years into its life and almost 4 inches in length with no pyramiding.
Lastly, here is my 12+ year old female who was about the same size of the 7 month old when I purchased her and two others from a breeder in South Carolina. Today she is 12 inches long and weights in at 10 lbs.
She has very slight pyramiding (my male looks the same shell-wise) which is common because it is impossible to replicate the exact environment and diet in the wild, even if you live in southern Florida.
I also attribute it to the fact we live in a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota which only allows us to have them outside 3-4 months a year where they can get normal exercise by wandering around our 1/4 acre fenced in backyard.
The amount of exercise these tortoises get impacts the overall health of their carapace and plastron.
So, if you want your Redfoot tortoise to look very close to their wild cousins and be healthy to the point they never have any need to go to the vet, follow my diet and habitat suggestions and this is what yours will look like throughout their life.
Here’s a handy list of the best foods to feed your Redfoot tortoise by Calcium to Phosphorus ratio and the Oxalate level of the food item.