Thursday, July 23, 2009

It's getting quiet in the baby pen

Only 3 babies left and in the morning, when it's feeding time, I miss the other ones mostly. Peanut and Cookie were always the first ones to show up in the morning, now that they are gone, nobody comes out by itself any more. I need to dig in the moss and find them to get them ready for breakfast.
I am not used to only have 3 babies and like yesterday I prepared way to much food.

Look how Bobby stretches his little legs to reach something what awoke his interest.

They all eat like there is no tomorrow

That's Rosie on the right. She couldn't get enough this morning and it took 40 minutes until she was finally full.

I am rearranging their pen today, since they don't need that much sphagnum moss now. I will plant on half with edible greens and the other half pile up with moss, where they can sleep. Hard to imagine to give the last babies away also, once an adopter is found.

Btw, I didn't hear anything from the last adopter yet, other than they arrived and are ok. I am really sad about it, had hoped I would get at least an update on how they are doing, if they ate well and maybe a picture.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

They have arrived :)

Just got an email from their new Dad, they all have arrived and are well. I am so relieved. Now I can start working. UPS still didn't update the scans. What a PITA they are!

Anyway, the babies are fine and I hope they are hungry and eat a lot.

3 1/2 hours since the departure from the airport and no update yet

I just called UPS to find out if there are any problems. The departure shows 3 1/2 hours ago and no arrival at the destination yet, which is only 100 miles away. The woman on the phone said, they will be delivered by 10:30, and that the driver has not unloaded the car yet, hence they didn't get scanned yet. I really hope she knows what she's talking about. Why does this driver take so long to unload the car? Can't he move his butt a bit faster? I would fire this guy, if I was UPS. This is beyond ridiculous. The last time when I shipped the first babies to Virginia, everything went smoothly withing minutes from the airport.
It is already 9am in SC and I am getting extremely worried now.

Where are my babies?

The travel is not done yet. The last UPS scan was 1 1/2 hours ago. I was up until midnight and followed their journey, then I fell asleep on my desk. When I woke up at around 3am, they just left Louisville Ky. What a joke, they first fly north to then fly back south.

This must be so scary for them to feel the movement of an airplane twice, not being able to move and not knowing what's going on. I hope they could sleep during the travel, but I doubt it. If they only get delivered in time. I am running to the bathroom almost every 10 minutes now, this whole adoption thing is completely draining on me. I wish I could find somebody close for the last 3 babies, so I can drive them myself.

I pray to God again to be with them and make the last piece of the journey go by fast now. It's 8:12 at their destination city now and they should be already out for delivery, but the scan still shows the departure from the airport, which is 100 miles away. Geez, hopefully the driver had no accident or something.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The babies got picked up at 4:30pm

Honestly, I will never understand how people can intentionally breed Tortoises and sell them for profit. I wouldn't ever be able to make a business out of selling animals. I understand that it's important to breed them in Captivity rather than having wild caught tortoises imported, but you must have a heart of stone, if you can do this.
It teared my heart apart, when the babies left me today. I am still crying, although I know they go into a very good home. If I had sold them, I would have to sell them to anybody who pays the money, not being able to chose their new home carefully.

I have probably refreshed the UPS tracking site a hundred times since they got picked up, but it doesn't show anything yet. They will get scanned once they arrive at the airport, I guess, just like the last time. It drives me nuts to know the package in many people's hands who probably don't care.
And if it wasn't enough stress yet, now it started to rain and pours buckets from the sky.

But I know God will be with them.

The babies are ready for the trip

I ordered the pick-up at 6pm, and like usual, UPS showed up already at noon. I told the guy that live animals cannot stay in the box for that long and that I ordered the late pick-up for a reason. He promised me to come back around 4pm, which is the allegedly latest pick-up they can do in my area. Okidokie, I hope he really comes again and doesn't forget about it now.

I got the babies ready, it's 3pm here. They had a warm bath, and then I fed them again. They all 3 had again some good bites.

Cookie on the left, Kiwi in the middle and Lily on the right.

Here is Kiwi in the plastic container. He looks as if he doesn't understand what's going on.
I gave him a last kiss and said good bye.

Here are the 2 little ones Cookie and Lily already packaged up. They are on the bottom of the box. I placed Kiwi's container on the top, some peanuts and newspaper in between.
Also the little ones got a last good bye kiss.

I pray to God that he is with them on the travel and protects them.
Here is the box ready to go. I opened it later again, because I thought, they don't need to be in the closed box until the guy actually arrives and picks them up. I will close the box again, once he is here.
Can't work today. This is wearing me out. Damnit! I am crying again. Why is this so hard?

Monday, July 20, 2009

3 more babies got adopted

Kiwi, Cookie and Lily got adopted today and will be shipped to South Carolina tomorrow. An other sleepless night for me, but I am glad I found a very good home for those babies also. when I ordered the UPS pick-up today, I started crying again. Why is it so difficult to part with them? It always feels as if a piece of my heart gets torn out.
I guess that's the punishment, because I didn't think about the future, when I started incubating the eggs. I wanted so badly see a little tort baby hatching, but I had no idea I would bond so strongly with all of them. They are like my own kids.
Cocoa will lay more eggs soon, but I won't breed any more. It is too hard on me to give them away and every time when a box with some of them inside leaves me, it is as if I lose a piece of myself.

I hope they all have a wonderful life in their new families. Tomorrow will be a horrible night for me again until I know they have safely arrived at their destination.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The new shade construction

The big pen that i built for the babies wasn't appreciated. The babies are still too small to be lost in such a huge pen and every time, when they finished eating, they immediately disappeared in the hides. Also with all the plants and rocks in there, they would fall on their backs trying to climb on everything and it was just too worrisome to let them out there, when i couldn't stand right beside it. Anyway, they are outside all day long, because they just love to be in fresh air, but still in the small under the bed container. To prevent them from being in direct sun, I took a big table cloth and hang it over the top of the container with 2 flowerstands on the left and the right to hold it up.

I am looking around since days to find a bigger storage box than the one I have right now, but the biggest size is only 3 inch longer, not much of a difference.
I found an outdoor pond at Lowes, rectangular, which would fit perfectly on top of the folding table.
I could even keep them in the winter inside in this pond and have them in the kitchen on that folding table. It is a great size, even when they get bigger. Once I have the pond (needs to be ordered) I will install an insect screen on the top, which I have left over from my storm door and buy 2 clamp on beach chair umbrellas, to use on either side.

The adoption so far isn't going to well, too many people who have no idea what a redfoot tortoise needs, want to adopt them, but they fail to provide the most essential things like proper lighting, outdoor pen or the right diet. So I have decided to take it easy with the adoption and not make a rushed decision, until somebody comes along, who really wants to get into it the right way.

Monday, July 6, 2009

What a feast

8am in the morning, when I mist the substrate in the baby pen, one little head after an other is coming out of the moss and looking for food. This morning I fed them indoors, since it was rainy and pretty windy. But nevertheless, the food is always appreciated, no matter, if it's served under the UVB lamp or under the sun.

Kiwi, the sleepy head of course, preferred to sleep a little longer than the babies, because he wants the food dish all for himself. Once the babies are done, I have to wake him up and place him on the food dish or he would sleep until late morning.

The mushroom pieces, which I serve every day, are the main attraction and always will be eaten first. I feed the babies only twice a week some fruits, because they become easily diarrhoea from too much. For sweetness I add smashed baby carrots every day, which they love very much also. Today they had beside the mushrooms and the carrots, kale, Lily flowers, Hibiscus leaves and flowers, romaine and nasturtium leaves and flowers.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Mud Queen Cocoa

Cocoa is officially the mud queen. After a heavy rain last night she looked for mud puddles all day long to wallow in them. I bathed her 3 times, but she went straight back to the mud, then I gave up. Look at this naughty girl.

She looks like an alien

I am adopting out all my babies

If you are interested in adopting one or more of my babies, please go to the adoption form that I have prepared. Please answer all questions and be as specific as possible. No adoption will be considered without any pictures of indoor and outdoor setups.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Peanut & Pebbles arrived safe and sound in their new home

Last night was a nightmare for me. Since they had left in the box with the UPS guy, I couldn't help and cried a few hours. It really wore me out and I had the worst imaginations on how people would throw the package around and upside down during the transport. UPS provides great tracking unlike USPS, and I could follow every step of the journey, so that was at least something. The new Mom even stayed up the entire night and checked on the tracking status regularily. I woke up with an extreme headache this morning and believe it or not, lost 3 pounds, because I had to run to the bathroom all the time, so nervous I have been. At 4am I woke up and after a cup of coffee, I turned the computer on to check the shipment status and saw, they had arrived in Louisiana, Kentucky. The new Mom was also awake and we wrote emails forward and back. some of you may think we are nuts, but it was my first time shipping animals, and I was so afraid, something terrible could happen to them. I was glued to the computer and refreshed the shipping status maybe a hundred times, until they finally arrived in Virginia. Then it took an other 2 hours until they got delivered and at 9:45 I got the email from their new Mom, that they had arrived and are doing well.

Here are some pics of them in their new home.
First soak

First meal

It seems as if they didn't even notice any difference. The setup was almost identical to what they had here and even the food dish was the same like I had for them. I was so happy that they found such a good home and extremely relived to see them well and eating after this sleepless night.

Thank you Kathy for adopting my babies (now yours) and being such a loving Mom to them.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Peanut and Pebbles got adopted

Unfortunately I can't keep the babies, since my space is limited and I have no room to overwinter them all in the house.
The first 2, Peanut & Pebbles got adopted by a woman in Virginia. They went on their journey today at 4:30 pm. I've shipped them UPS over night and probably can't sleep tonight until i know they have arrived and are fine.
Here is a last pic of them, when I packaged them in the box.

I covered them with moist sphagnum moss, but left the containers open until the UPS guy showed up. They both climbed out of the container and looked at me like saying: Good bye Mom.
It broke my heart and I cried for a couple of hours.
I am sure they will heave a great life at their new home, but I felt miserable, not knowing how people take care of the package during the flight.

My heart is bleeding. I still have 6 more left that are going to get adopted. Julie from the Turtle Rescue on Long Island helps me to find very good homes for them all. And with every shipment a piece of my heart gets torn out. I won't breed any more babies.