Tutor Tortoise of the Month

Tutor Tortoise of the Month

Sihu (“flower” in Hopi) is thought to be young middle aged. In Nevada, at the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center (DTCC), she lived with another Tortoise, Pamuya (Water Moon) who, sadly passed before coming to sanctuary. Sihu has taught us about grace in the face of adversity.


Video credit: Maggie Shreve

In the Spring, we will introduce her to some of the other residents so that she will have the opportunity to cultivate friends and comrades. Her powerful right arm is missing, likely as a result of a dog or other attack. Unlike her companions, Sihu will sit out a significant part of winter brumation (reptile hibernation).


During the medical exam carried out by the Tortoises doctor, Sihu’s body condition was judged to be wanting. She was also diagnosed with roundworm parasites. Together, these factors led to the decision to keep her awake and effect the parasite treatment so that she can build up her strength.


Desert tortoise, SihuShe occupies her own suite, a soil-filled wading pool with a small “hut” in to which she can retire for the evening. She also has an area to stretch her legs further during the day (see video). Her suite receives full sun when the skies shine and the air temperature is kept near 85F.


She is very active despite her disability and has enjoyed digging into fresh dandelions along with nutrient packed Tortoise “pellets”. Sihu will receive tepid warm water soaks to keep her hydrated.




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