This page last edited on

01 August, 2008



Red Foots


Fun Facts

Red foot tortoises are mainly vegetarians but do consume some animal protein in the wild.  Their diet consists of weeds, grasses, fruits, insects and worms in nature but they do well in captivity on tortoise chow, greens, veggies, a little fruit and earth worms. They inhabit moist rainforests of South America but can be found in grasslands.



  For my complete information on housing and food/water for red foot tortoises please sure to visit the the links on the left. These adorable little creatures are red foot tortoises! The hatchlings just could not be cuter if you ask me. I raised these three hatchlings from about two months old.  Unfortunately two of them died but I have one, named Barney now, that has thrived and grown tremendously since the spring of 2006.  I also have an adult red foot called Fred who was taken in by someone after they found him wandering in their neighborhood. When the person found out I had tortoises they asked if I would take it in and I readily agreed.  I really love Fred, he is shy but the most active tortoise in the pen!


  The hatchlings came to me in February 2004 from my friend Erich who helped get me started raising reptiles. He has plenty of red foots who keep laying eggs so much of the time he has hatchlings. In March 2005 I put the three hatchlings outside in their plastic bin on the back patio, under the roof.  When I went back to check on them 20 minutes later the sun had moved and was shining right on them. Much to my horror I discovered that two of the hatchlings had died from the heat! I was filled with grief by their deaths and my own stupidity and lack of knowledge about having them so young outside, even if in the shade, and especially in a plastic bin even though it was large and open. I have since learned that red foot tortoises do not sit out in the sun much, preferring to stay in the shade the majority of the time. I had only been raising them for a year and was still learning and I am still learning almost two years later. I cannot stress enough to anyone who has hatchlings not to repeat the same mistake that I did. If they had not succumbed to the sun they would be thriving just like Barney. Despite their deaths, I felt compelled to share their photos and video on this page. It will help honor their lives and remind me to not be so careless, to be more knowledgeable about the animals I take care of.


   Red foots are real easy tortoises to take care of, especially when the are old enough to live outside.  Aside from setting up proper outside housing, you need to feed them every day and change the water dish.  I make sure that I get a good look at all my reptiles when I see them outside to make sure they are doing well and have no physical problems.  The majority of the time you don't see them because they are hiding. I usually only see them when they are eating.  Red foot tortoises come from the rainforests of South America.  Occasionally they can be found in grasslands.  The red foots do great living outside here in south  Florida but in the winter if it got into the 30s at night they would have to be taken inside. They don't bask a lot but because they are tropical tortoises they cannot withstand cold temperatures. If you live in a cold winter climate you will have to house your red foots indoors until the summer.


  I wasn't sure if the red foot tortoises were red or yellow foots until I came across this page for species identification.  Now I know that I have two red foot and 2 yellow foot tortoises.  


  If you house red foot tortoises indoors - which I don't recommend unless they are hatchlings or during the cold, winter months - you will need a large enough enclosure, a basking area and UV ray lights. A trip to the local reptile shop will get you set up. If you can, adopt one from a rescue group and put it in a secure, outdoor pen like I have in the warmer months. These are fairly large tortoises when full grown, much bigger than Russian tortoises but not as big as African spur thighs. Miss Ava, the similar yellow foot tortoise, weighs approximately 25 pounds!


UPDATE January 2007


Barney was found in the pen with red and swollen eyes. I tried what I could to alleviate her problem but ended up taking her to Erich for antibiotics. After being treated for about two weeks, Barney was able to come home. I kept her in the house for a few more weeks but now she is back living outside. Erich thinks she got a cold and that the cold weather we had was not good for her being so young. Thanks again to Erich for working on one of the kids! Click on the picture to enlarge it.


  Thanks for visiting the red foot tortoise page. I hope you will enjoy the video and pictures of them!





Click on Playlist to view the fourteen movies of the red foot tortoises.



Hatchlings in bin

This is how they lived when they were young


Barney and Fred


Barney eating Mazuri chow

Barney is getting so big! Must be the chow! Miss Ava is eating chow also.

Tortoise Page | Tortoise Housing & Care | Tortoise Feeding & Water | African Spur Thigh | Red Foots | Russians | Yellow Foots

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DISCLAIMER:  This website was set up to SHARE my OWN experience with my reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens and local wildlife and to post pictures and video of them. It was NOT SET UP to offer my opinion or expertise on ANY QUESTION that I am asked and what I post on this website should not be taken as "EXPERT ADVISE" or how to take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens or local wildlife. I AM NOT A REPTILE RESCUE GROUP, GUINEA PIG RESCUE GROUP, VETERINARIAN, REPTILE EXPERT, GUINEA PIG EXPERT, PONDS/FISH EXPERT, GARDEN EXPERT OR WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR! I have limited experience with reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens, therefore, I am NOT QUALIFIED to give out advise or answer questions and you, as a visitor to this website, should not take anything on this website as expert advise or accurate information.  I present this website for fun and fun only - NOT as a reference website to instruct anyone on how to properly take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish or gardens.  I share how I DO THINGS for my reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens and this is not intended for others to take as expert advise or to mimic. Furthermore, my political views are my own and not intended to offend, annoy, hurt or demean any person, entity or organization. I express my views as an American who has the right to free speech under the Constitution of the United States of America. Please feel free to set up your own website and express your views, post your pictures and video and share with the rest of us in cyberspace what your little corner of the world is like. Thank you very much for your kind understanding in appreciating the value and contents of this website.


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