The Red-Rooted Tortoise is a medium sized species from South America that averages in size from 12-16 inches in length. It is one of the more commonly found tortoises in the pet trade due to its relatively small adult size. Its bright, attractive shell and skin color as well as its availability year round thanks to the large breeding farms in South America make it a reptile pet favorite. These beautiful animals have dark colored shells and skin accented with yellow spots and red facial and leg scales. They live on the edges of forests where they survive on an omnivorous diet that can consist of everything from grasses and fallen fruit to insects and even carrion. The hatchling tortoises have a tendency to be very curious and almost fearless which makes them a sought after reptile pet.
The Beautiful Red Footed Tortoise Morphs
In the last decade a number of red-footed tortoise morphs have become available and due to their ability to live and breed outdoors in south Florida at least three of these morphs have been produced right here in our back yard. The Hypo Red-Footed was one of the first and happens to be a recessive morph. It was the product of years of hard work that started with the importation of adult Hypo Red Footed specimens from the wild. The Albino Red-Footed was produced spontaneously by another South Florida breeder and will make a huge splash in the captive tortoise trade. Finally the anerythristic red-footed animals have been produced spontaneously in two separate collections that were the result of line breeding animals imported from Bolivia.
Finding a Red-Footed Tortoise for Sale
Like most reptile pets it is best to start with a young animal and it is also a good idea to know the source of the animal before making a purchase. Most of the red-footed tortoises for sale found on the market today are produced on a farm and reared till they reach the minimum importation size of four inches before they are shipped to the United States. The rest are captive born babies that have been bred and born locally by small breeders that produce these fantastic animals out of their passion for the species. A small number of adult tortoises are imported every year and it is safe to say that without the proper care and medical attention they need you should avoid them as a first time buyer.
Things to Know When Keeping These Reptile Pets
When you are considering keeping tortoises as pets it is very important to consider three facts before you acquire your new-shelled friend. First thing to consider is the longevity of the animal which with proper care can reach into decades and on many occasions past a century. Not all tortoises live that long but it is essential to have a long term plan for the animal. The second important aspect is the adult size. Like most reptiles, tortoises will keep growing as they age and some of the larger species can reach hundreds of pounds so it is good to know the general history of the species before making your purchase. Finally the setup and maintenance of the animal is extremely important in the long term health and prosperity of your reptile pet so get informed before you purchase. At xyzReptiles we have a dedicated tortoise section that contains between 5 and 8 different species on a year round basis.