Frankie Tortoise Tales Frankie Tortoise Tails sulcata care tortoise sulcata husbandry Frankie Tortoise Tails Frankie Tortoise Tails: Yard Toys



September 10, 2015

Yard Toys

Nothing is more pitiful than a bored sulcata.  Nothing is more scary than Frankie looking for something to ram.

There are things I don't want Frankie to ram.  I am top of that list.  The young Frankie would occasionally bump into me.  Bumping is a very close behavior and ramming is just a few pounds and a much bigger bruise away.

Frankie amuses himself by a lot of walking but he just gets it into his head to do something more.  Last night, before tucking himself in for the night, he thought it would be fun to push his dogloo into a tree.

Dogloo wasn't doing anything at all, not calling attention to itself, and it certainly didn't cause Frankie to stub his toe or any such indignity.  It just existed in Frankie yard and thus a potential for his special kind of suclata attention.

Last week, Annette, a local tortoise friend who owns a one-pound Frankie-wanna be beast, came to pick up some supplies for "Foots" and got to meet Frankie for the first time.  I forget that possibly I should warn people that Frankie can get enthusiastic about visitors.

At this first meeting, Annette saw a very big, large, hundred pound boulder moving at a very crisp pace directly at her, heads up, and very animated.

Frankie saw a potential carrot giver.

Brave Annette did not want to back down because after all this is just a tortoise.  What could a tortoise possibly do?  Right?  Bruise the shins?  Break her legs?  Knock her down and trample her like a shoe box?

I told Annette to stand her ground that Frankie was just happy to see her.  She chose to move closer to me and let me handle the we-move-much-faster-than-anyone-expects beast.

He just wanted a carrot.

So, no, Frankie is not allowed to ram people and so far he has not hurt anyone...besides me.  I remain an ever vigilant observer of Sulcata Behavior.

Give Frankie toys.  Objects to ram.  Dogloo will do.  Buckets are perfect.

Bucket provides hours of amusement for Frankie.  Even when the bucket gets the upper hand.

Lesson:  Sulcata tortoises move faster than you think.


  1. Funny, beautiful, educational, inspirational and slightly scary as always.
    Tidgy's Dad via Tortoise Forum

  2. Haaaaaa!!!!!! That is great!!
    Harris via Tortoise Forum

  3. Love this! Frankie handles his orange bucket like a soccer player handles a soccer ball!
    Laura Pfister via Facebook

  4. Funny and brilliantly written, and I loved the vid!
    Melissa 101 via Tortoise Forum

  5. Frankie is such a character!
    And yes tortoises move faster than we think!!! They do run!!!