The turtle parents are happy about their offspring, who is now nine months old.
It is not without pride that Edmund Schmid presents his turtle family in the open-air enclosure in his beautiful garden. These are the two larger 20-year-old females Susi 1 and Susi 2, and the somewhat smaller male Strolchi with their 16 armored children at the age of nine months. “They will probably survive us,” says the hobby breeder, because these sun-loving animals from Africa and the Mediterranean can live up to 100 years.
“The males are smaller than the females, and it’s called Strolchi because it has already ripped out a few times,” he adds. Since the sun hatches the eggs buried in the sand in the warm countries of origin, an incubator is needed in the Upper Palatinate, although the temperature has to be lowered a bit at night.
In 2018, the turtles were happy about 16 times their offspring: here the article
Strolchi has mated his Susis again after hibernation. In May they shoveled pits in the sand, laid the eggs and covered the pits nicely with earth. “The eggs have to be in the same position in the incubator as they were laid and are therefore marked,” explains Schmid. “After about 70 to 90 days, in August, the tiny things hatch, still half covered with eggshell.” The first week they feed on the yolk sac, then there is lettuce, cucumber, fruit, greenery from the meadow and some concentrate from the pet shop.
Otherwise, the turtles are frugal and easy-care pets, except before the winter stiffness in late October and waking up in early March. Hundreds of thousands of crawlers were introduced in the past. Today only animals bred in Germany can be traded. To prove their origin and descent, they would need ID with photos, normally from the front and lying on their backs, explains Edmund Schmid. He is already looking forward to the next offspring in August.