First of all, tortoises are definitely not the same as turtles! The main difference is that tortoises live on land while turtles live in water, and evolution has granted them a range of adaptations to match these different habitats (e.g. large, heavy, domed shells for tortoises and lightweight, streamlined shells for turtles).
Turtles are more commonly kept as pets, but tortoises are actually quite a lot easier to look after and care for. Having said that, some species can still represent a significant challenge, so it’s worth checking out all the different types of tortoise to find the one that will suit you best. There’s a surprising amount of variation – there are large differences in size between species, some species hibernate and others don’t, some can be aggressive to other tortoises, and lighting, temperature and dietary requirements also differ.
Whatever species you choose, you should get your new tortoise checked over for parasites, and even after that it’s advisable to keep your latest pet away from any other tortoises you have for a while, just to make sure nothing was missed in the health check up. Sourcing your tortoise can also be problematic – captive-bred tortoises are always preferable, and picking one up from a rescue center is also a possibility, as their long lifespans will sometimes lead to them outliving their owners.
Here at Exotic Pets Resources, we provide detailed information, recommended products and care sheets for a number of different types of tortoise that are commonly kept as pets, including the Sulcata Tortoise and Russian Tortoise.
To explore the different species covered on this site, either use the drop-down menu at the top of the page or take a look at the complete list of tortoises below:
The site is constantly expanding and new species are added every day, so if you can’t find what you’re looking for, it’s worth checking back sometime soon!