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Please be patient while we update everything and at the same time make it 'mobile friendly' for 'phones and tablets.

In this very extensive online library, we present a selection of reference articles from our Newsletter, and a number of additional articles specifically produced for this website. We hope this information will provide both enjoyable reading and will help you better understand your tortoise or turtle's needs. Feel free to link to these pages from your own site. New articles are added regularly, so check back from time to time for updates. These articles are grouped together by subject to make browsing easier.  Do not forget to check our
CARESHEET section as well, which now includes printable versions of basic information on many species, and a variety of posters, notices and other resources in downloadable PDF format. Please note that where veterinary treatmens and/or drug dosages are discussed these are for general educational purposes only. If you have a sick tortoise, consult a qualified veterinarian. We make this information available because in our opinion, the better informed keepers are, the better they are able to recognise serious illnesses and the better able they are to evaluate veterinary treatments which may be suggested.


Information on individual species, housing, lighting, heating, safety, buying tortoises, ponds and filters for aquatic species, substrates and diet., etc., subdivided into several sections for ease of reference.

Captive breeding

Information on egg incubation, housing and rearing hatchlings, etc.


Exploitation around the world - and some efforts to help.

Taxonomy & Natural history

The classification of tortoise and turtle species, and field reports, etc.

Veterinary Information

Comprehensive set of articles covering most common (and some uncommon) health issues that every keeper should be familiar with. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Essential information everyone should know.

                hermanni boettgeri - Eastern Hermanns tortoise


Diet & Feeding

A series of in-depth articles on nutritional management and feeding in captivity. You wil find a lot of information here on how to avoid nutritional problems for a wide variety of species and the correct use of vitamin and mineral supplements, etc.

The Causes of Pyramiding Deformity in Tortoises 

Weisner & Iben (2003) - A Criticism of the Research Methodology

The Effect of Basking Lamps on the Health of Captive Tortoises & Other Reptiles

The Climate Frame Terrarium: Outdoor housing with natural UV-B and optimal Infra-Red

Dietary Fibre in the diet of the herbivorous tortoise Testudo graeca graeca in Spain: Some implications for captive husbandry  

Feeding Tortoises: Avoiding Dietary Disasters

Suggested wild foods for herbivorous tortoises

Toxicity of some common houseplants

Feeding Aquatic Turtles

Promoting Proper Bone Development - Choosing and Using Calcium Supplements

Feeding and Nutrition FAQ

Plant toxins and herbivores - an outline of the biology

Mediterranean Tortoises: How much to feed?

Feeding Mediterranean Tortoises - Basic Guidelines

Feeding Redfoot and Yellowfoot Tortoises

Hidden Dangers in Food!

Live Food Choices for Turtles

High growth rate diets and vitamin D3 - a response

Tortoises: Do They Need To Drink ?

Notes on Dietary Constituents for Herbivorous Terrestrial Chelonians and their effect on Growth and Development.

All about vitamins, minerals and Tortoises

Fussy feeders - What to do if you have a tortoise who demonstrates 'addictive' dietary patterns.

Habitats and Housing

This section contains vital information and advice on lighting, heating, humidity control and various ideas for pens, vivariums and both indoor and outdoor housing methods for a wide range of species.

Building a Tortoise Table Habitat

Comparison of tortoise indoor housing designs wood_new.gif

Evaluating Tortoise Habitats for Animal Welfare Act Compliance wood_new.gif

Designing High quality outdoor habitats wood_new.gif

Why you should never mix species wood_new.gif

Hemp bedding and substrates - Danger! wood_new.gif

Indoor Housing & Vivarium Design for Tortoises

Tortoise Vivarium Review and Comparison Report wood_new.gif

How to Measure Temperatures Accurately  wood_new.gif

Redfoot Tortoise Outdoor Husbandry In Europe

Indoor housing ideas for a baby Redfoot tortoise wood_new_1.gif

Understanding Vivarium Substrates  

Understanding Reptile Lighting systems.

Understanding reptile heating systems

Microclimates in Captivity

Free Roaming Reptile Dangers

TROPICAL RAINFOREST TORTOISES AND TURTLES: Practical techniques for the provision of adequate ambient humidity in captivity

A Habitat for Horsfields - Includes good info on vivarium design for other species too. Read before buying a 'fish-tank' vivarium for a tortoise!

Secure Habitats

Top Tips for Perfect Pens

A Filter Design for Box Turtles

Practical notes on creating humid tropical vivaria for tortoises and turtles.

Avoiding problems with Box Turtles

The Maintenance and Breeding of Tortoises and Turtles in Cold Climates

Aquatic Turtle Maintenance

This section contains all the information you need to provide aquatic turtles and terrapins with the correct environment and diet. From basic care to advanced husbandry concepts, you should find what you are looking for in these articles.

Creating Natural Habitats for Aquatic Turtles

Surface Mount Ponds for Sliders & Other Turtles

Care & Beeding of Central American Wood Turtles wood_new.gif

Quick and Simple  Emergency Housing for Turtles 

Care and Breeding of Musk Turtles wood_new.gif

Red-Eared Slider Care

Care of Aquatic turtles

Feeding Aquatic Turtles

Help! I've FOUND a turtle! What do do if you find a 'stray'

Sternotherus oderatus: The Common Musk Turtle

Eye Problems in Aquatic Turtles

Nest Sites for Aquatic Turtles - Prevention of Dystocia

The Myth of the Red-eared slider Threat


The topic of hibernation often causes a lot of concern.  In this section, we have gathered together some of the best articles on the subject from the past 20 years of the Tortoise Trust Newsletter!

The Correct Way to Measure Tortoises (Jackson Ratio)

Warm Autumn = Hibernation Problems?

Safer Hibernation & Your Tortoise - New and Updated Version

Post-hibernation problems in Mediterranean tortoises

Refrigerator Hibernation for Tortoises & Turtles

Preparing for hibernation: fasting period

Hibernating Juvenile Tortoises  

Refrigerator Hibernation Data with graphs

Waking up from Hibernation - Essential Info!  

Autumn/fall feeding behaviour - UK & N. Europe

18 Essential Hibernation Hints

Outdoor (Natural) Hibernation

Overwintering Tortoises

Species-specifc and Miscellaneous articles

Some articles covering the care of individual species, and a range of other articles on safety, general care and maintenance that do not fall within any of our other main categories.

Practical Care of the Russian Tortoise

Help! I've lost my tortoise! Tips to locate missing animals

Basic Care of Mediterranean Tortoises

Disaster Planning for pets - be ready if danger strikes

Care and Maintenance of the Leopard Tortoise

Sternotherus oderatus: The Common Musk Turtle

Star Tortoise Basics

Tortoises as pets: legal issues & where to obtain  

Care and Maintenance of common South African tortoises; A Brief Summary

7 Simple Rules for Successfull Tortoisekeeping.

When tortoises won't feed

Should I give my Tortoise a Bath?


Tunisian tortoise Identification and Care

Practical care & breeding of the Horsfield's or Russian tortoise in captivity.

Tortoise thefts

Companions for existing tortoises

                        kleinmanni - Egyptian tortoise

Captive breeding

Nest Sites for Terrestrial and Semi-Terrestrial Chelonia

Breeding Leopard Tortoises

Breeding Bell's Hingeback Tortoises

Breeding the Burmese Star (G. platynota)

Keeping & Breeding the Pancake Tortoise

Nest Sites for Aquatic Turtles - Prevention of Dystocia (Egg-binding) by Environmental Management

Incubating Redfoot Tortoise Eggs

Rearing Healthy Hatchlings

An easy and effective method of  accommodation for hatchling tortoises

An incubator with variable daily cycle  

Breeding Emys orbicularis (the European Pond Turtle)

Kinixys erosa (Schweigger 1812) - A Captive breeding experience.

Egg FAQ - Common questions about eggs and incubation

Captive breeding of the Egyptian tortoise Testudo kleinmanni.

An effective method of artificial incubation for mediterranean tortoise eggs.

Artificial incubation techniques in relation to Testudo graeca & T. hermanni with notes on embryonic anoxia as a possible factor in hatchling mortality in captive breeding programs.

                        'banjos' for sale in Morocco


The Asian Turtle Crisis (Hosted by NYTTS)

Turtles in Crisis: The Asian Food Markets

Turtle Survey of Myanmar

Lonesome George

Snapping Turtles: A Species in Danger - A Comprehensive Review of their Biology, Ecology and Conservation  

Status of the Egyptian Tortoise, Testudo kleinmanni, in Egypt.

The trade in tortoise-derived souvenir products in Morocco.

Folklore, myth and exploitation of reptiles in Morocco and Tunisia

Thinking of buying a tortoise? Is it really captive-bred? Is the CITES permit worth the paper it is printed on? Can you believe a word the dealer says? Find out here

                        nabeulensis - Tunisian tortoise

Taxonomy & Natural history

The Mystery of 'The Golden Greeks'

Habitat Gallery 1: Testudo (graeca) ibera, Turkey wood_new.gif

Testudo kleinmanni in Libya - Field Report  

Glossary of Chelonian Terminology

Testudo horsfieldi (GRAY 1844) A brief review of its Biology, Ecology and Captive Breeding

A Walk on the Wild Side with Testudo hermanni

Notes on the Systematics and Ecology of Testudo hermanni GMELIN 1789

The status and nomenclature of Testudo (graeca) terrestris FORSKAL 1775: with additional notes on some little known land tortoises of Israel including Testudo floweri BODENHEIMER 1935

An Outline of Florida's Fascinating Turtles

The Spiny-Tailed Lizard at home.

Volcano of giant tortoises.

Biotype, nomenclature and taxonomic diagnostic characters of Testudo hermanni hermanni GMELIN 1789 in Southern France with preliminary notes on comparative egg morphology with T. h. boettgeri MOJSISOVICS 1889.

An introduction to the Mauremys turtles of the Mediterranean

A revision of the Testudines of North Africa, Asia and Europe - Genus: Testudo.

Preliminary report on the Taxonomic, Biotypic and Conservation status of the land tortoises of Tunisia.

Tortoises of north Africa; taxonomy, nomenclature, phylogeny and evolution with notes on field studies in Tunisia.

Observations on the incidence and taxonomic significance of divided supracaudal scutes in Mediterranean tortoises genus Testudo

In search of little-known tortoises in southern Turkey.

Field Research: Homopus signatus signatus

New light on an old tortoise - Gilbert White's Selborne tortoise re-discovered.

New record size for north african Testudo.

Kinixys erosa -
                        Schweigger's hinged Tortoise

Veterinary Information

This section includes data on treatments and medications which should be used under qualified veterinary supervision only. If you have a sick tortoise or turtle please seek qualified professional advice

Disinfection Protocols for Tortoise & Turtle Keepers wood_new_1.gif

Treating Sight Damaged Tortoises wood_new_1.gif

Adverse reaction to Baytril in a Leopard tortoise

Rehabilitating Hingeback Tortoises (Genus Kinixys) 

Emergency Treatment of a Prolapse in a Juvenile Tortoise 

Shell-Rot Revisited

Albendazole & Ivermectin - A warning!  

The Tortoise Trust Hospital: A brief history

Recognising Veterinary Emergencies

An outline on treating 'RNS' or respiratory diseases in chelonians

Eye Problems in Aquatic Turtles

Herpes Virus Infection Associated with Lymphoma in Testudo hermanni

Tortoise Epidemic Quarantine and Barrier nursing Techniques

Shell injuries - Practical guidelines for vets.

Worming difficult to handle tortoises and turtles.

The Jackson Ratio Graph - Inappropriate Use

Observations on Dehydration in Reptiles

Understanding common worms and protozoa.

Common diseases

First Aid For the Injured

One Tortoise Trust members' experience of a viral epidemic

Protozoan infections in Chelonians.

Balantidium and Nyctotherus in Testudo species

Disease prevention in tortoise collections.

Abcesses in Chelonians.

Nursing sick tortoises

Veterinary Management of Wild Chelonian Populations